Vascular reactivity and baroreflex function during hyperthermia in conscious rats

Michael P. Massett, Stephen J. Lewis, Harald M. Stauss, Kevin C. Kregel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

29 Scopus citations

Abstract

The hemodynamic responses to vasoconstrictor agents are blunted during heating in anesthetized rats. It is unknown whether reflex neural responses to these agents are also altered during hyperthermia. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine the effect of hyperthermia on the hemodynamic and baroreflex-mediated sympathetic neural responses to vasoactive agents in conscious, unrestrained rats. The splanchnic sympathetic nerve activity (SpNA) and systemic and regional hemodynamic responses to injections of phenylephrine and sodium nitroprusside were measured during normothermia (37°C) and hyperthermia (41.5°C). The hemodynamic responses to phenylephrine and sodium nitroprusside were blunted with heating, whereas the SpNA responses to both agents were augmented or unchanged. At 41.5°C, the baroreflex curves relating heart rate (MR) and SpNA to mean arterial blood pressure were shifted to the right. The operating range and gain of the blood pressure (BP)-MR reflex were significantly reduced during heating, whereas the operating range of the BP-SpNA reflex was augmented at 41.5°C. These results indicate that heating alters the cardiovascular and sympathetic neural responses to vasoactive agents in vivo. Furthermore, the data suggest that heating differentially affects arterial baroreflex control of MR and SpNA, shifting both curves toward higher BP values but selectively attenuating baroreflex control of HR.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R1282-R1289
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Volume279
Issue number4 48-4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2000

Keywords

  • Baroreceptors
  • Blood pressure
  • Heart rate
  • Mesenteric resistance
  • Splanchnic sympathetic nerve activity
  • Temperature

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