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J Appl Physiol (1985). 1991 Jul;71(1):210-6.

Activation of neurons in the rostral ventrolateral medulla increases bronchomotor tone in dogs.

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Division of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of California, Davis 95616.


Previous work from this laboratory has demonstrated that the chemical activation of cell bodies in the caudal ventrolateral medulla of chloralose-anesthetized dogs decreased bronchomotor tone by withdrawing cholinergic input to airway smooth muscle. In the present study we determined the bronchomotor responses to microinjection of DL-homocysteic acid (100 mM; 25-50 nl) into the rostral ventrolateral (RVL) medulla of chloralose-anesthetized dogs. Total lung resistance was used as a functional index of bronchomotor tone. Microinjection of DL-homocysteic acid into the 20 sites located in the lateral aspect of the RVL medulla increased both total lung resistance [from 6.5 +/- 0.4 to 9.1 +/- 0.8 (SE) cmH2O.l-1.s; P less than 0.05] and mean arterial pressure (from 125 +/- 5 to 148 +/- 8 mmHg; P less than 0.05). Microinjection of this amino acid into nine sites located in the medial aspect of the RVL medulla increased mean arterial pressure (from 130 +/- 6 to 153 +/- 6 mmHg; P less than 0.05) but had no effect on total lung resistance. We confirmed in three sites that the increase in total lung resistance evoked by microinjection of DL-homocysteic acid was accompanied by an increase in tracheal smooth muscle tension. The increase in total lung resistance evoked by DL-homocysteic acid was not affected by beta-adrenergic blockade but was abolished by muscarinic blockade.

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