The Durk Pearson & Sandy Shaw®
Life Extension NewsTM
Volume 12 No. 3 • June 2009

Long-Term Administration of Green Tea Catechins Prevents Age-Related Declines in Cognition in Mice

More good news for tea drinkers: A new study1 reports that 14 month old (aged) C57BL/6 J mice given 0.05% or 0.1% green tea catechins in their drinking water for six months maintained spatial learning and memory in the Morris Water Maze to levels similar to young controls. Meanwhile, aged controls had significantly longer mean swimming distance (to reach the underwater platform) as compared to the young controls and the treated old mice. When the platform was removed, aged control mice spent considerably less time in the target area (where the platform had been) than the young control mice. The 14 month old mice treated with 0.05% and 0.1% green tea catechins performed similarly to the young control mice.

The authors also investigated possible mechanisms for the beneficial cognitive effects of the green tea catechins. As noted in the paper, BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor) and Bcl-2 are targets of CREB (cAMP Response Element Binding Protein) and are key proteins involved in neuronal plasticity and synaptic structure. Levels of both BDNF and Bcl-2 were significantly decreased in the hippocampus of aged control mice compared with young control mice. However, “the reductions of BDNF were prevented by 0.05% and 0.1% GTC [green tea catechins] supplementation … and the reductions of Bcl-2 were prevented by all three doses [0.025%, 0.05%, and 0.1% green tea catechins] …”1 The researchers also found that the phosphorylation of transcription factor CREB at Ser133 (thought to be a pivotal step in long term memory formation) was significantly improved (as compared to aged controls) in the 0.05% and 0.1% green tea catechins treated mice.

Durk drinks our ShapeShifter Teas™ every day, as well as adding our ShapeShifter Teas Booster Caps™. Sandy drinks combinations of various green and black teas daily.

Another great benefit approved by reality (no bureaucrats or “czars” needed)!


  1. Li et al. Long-term administration of green tea catechins prevents age-related spatial learning and memory decline in C57BL/6 J mice by regulating hippocampal cyclic AMP-response element binding protein signaling cascade. Neuroscience 159:1206-15 (2009).

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