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Anesthesiology. 1975 May;42(5):559-66.

Potencies of doxapram and hypoxia in stimulating carotid-body chemoreceptors and ventilation in anesthetized cats.


The effects of doxapram on carotid chemoreceptor activity and on ventilation (phrenic-nerve activity) were tested before and after denervation of the peripheral chemoreceptors in cats. Doxapram was found to be a potent stimulus to the carotid chemoreceptors; the stimulation produced by 1.0 mg/kg doxapram, iv, equalled that produced by a Pao2 of 38 torr. Doxapram also increased phrenic-nerve activity in doses as low as 0.2 mg/kg, iv. After denervation of the peripheral chemoreceptors, doxapram in doses as large as 6 mg/kg failed to stimulate ventilation. It is concluded that (in anesthetized cats) doxapram in doses of less than 6 mg/kg increases ventilation by direct stimulation of the carotid, and, probably, the aortic, chemoreceptors, not by a direct effect on the medullary respiratory center.

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