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Raphe magnus nucleus is involved in ventilatory but not hypothermic response to CO2
  • Universidade de São Paulo (USP)
  • Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP)
There is evidence that serotonin [ 5- hydroxytryptamine ( 5- HT)] is involved in the physiological responses to hypercapnia. Serotonergic neurons represent the major cell type ( comprising 15 - 20% of the neurons) in raphe magnus nucleus ( RMg), which is a medullary raphe nucleus. In the present study, we tested the hypothesis 1) that RMg plays a role in the ventilatory and thermal responses to hypercapnia, and 2) that RMg serotonergic neurons are involved in these responses. To this end, we microinjected 1) ibotenic acid to promote nonspecific lesioning of neurons in the RMg, or 2) anti- SERT- SAP ( an immunotoxin that utilizes a monoclonal antibody to the third extracellular domain of the serotonin reuptake transporter) to specifically kill the serotonergic neurons in the RMg. Hypercapnia caused hyperventilation and hypothermia in all groups. RMg nonspecific lesions elicited a significant reduction of the ventilatory response to hypercapnia due to lower tidal volume ( V-T) and respiratory frequency. Rats submitted to specific killing of RMg serotonergic neurons showed no consistent difference in ventilation during air breathing but had a decreased ventilatory response to CO2 due to lower VT. The hypercapnia- induced hypothermia was not affected by specific or nonspecific lesions of RMg serotonergic neurons. These data suggest that RMg serotonergic neurons do not participate in the tonic maintenance of ventilation during air breathing but contribute to the ventilatory response to CO2. Ultimately, this nucleus may not be involved in the thermal responses CO2.
Issue Date: 
Journal of Applied Physiology. Bethesda: Amer Physiological Soc, v. 103, n. 5, p. 1780-1788, 2007.
Time Duration: 
Amer Physiological Soc
  • hypercapnia
  • ventilation
  • serotonin
Access Rights: 
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Appears in Collections:Artigos, TCCs, Teses e Dissertações da Unesp

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