Objective To establish a mouse model with disorders of learning and memory abilities and to observe the change of nitric oxide (NO) contents in the hippocampi of the mice and the prophylactic and therapeutic effects of nimodipine on them. Methods The mice were divided into some groups: the model group was made with the administration of ibotenic acid into the right hippocampi of the mice, the control group was made with the administration of phosphate buffer solution (PBS) in the same way, and the prevention and treatment groups were made with the intraperitoneal injections of nimodipine either 20 min before or 24h after IBA injections. All the mice in various groups were measured with avoiding darkness and stair jumping tests, and the NO contents in the hippocampi were detected. Immunohistochemical assay was used to observe the IL 1α in the hippocampi of IBA injected sides. Results The experiment showed that the learning and memory abilities of model mice were worse than those of the control mice, and those of the mice in the prevention and treatment groups were better than those of model mice. The NO contents in the right hippocampi of the model mice was significantly increased than that of control mice ( P <0.05). The NO contents of right hippocampi of the mice in the prevention and treatment groups was remarkably lower than those of the model mice ( P <0.01). IL 1α immunoreaction was visualized in the IBA injected sides of the hippocampi, but not in the PBS injected sides. Conclusions A mouse model with disorders of learning and memory abilities could be established successfully with the unilateral administration of IBA into the hippocampus. Elevated NO content and IL 1α immunoreaction might be involved in the pathophysiologic course of the learning and memory disorders induced by IBA. Nimodipine might play some roles in the prevention and treatment of learning and memory disorders.