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Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol. 2009 Jul;297(1):R185-93. doi: 10.1152/ajpregu.00058.2008. Epub 2009 May 13.

Hypothalamic paraventricular nucleus mediates sodium-induced changes in cardiovascular and renal function in conscious sheep.

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Karolinska Institutet, Dept. of Physiology and Pharmacology, S-17177, Stockholm, Sweden.


The contribution of the paraventricular nucleus of the hypothalamus (PVN) in mediating cardiovascular, renal, hormonal, and sympathetic nerve responses to increased cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) [Na(+)] was investigated in conscious sheep. Intracerebroventricular hypertonic NaCl (0.5 mol/l, 20 microl/min for 60 min) increased arterial blood pressure [AP; +13.4 (sd 2.0) mmHg, P < 0.001] and central venous pressure [CVP; +2.8 (sd 1.3) mmHg, P < 0.001], but did not significantly change heart rate or cardiac output (n = 6). Elevated CSF [Na(+)] also lowered plasma ANG II levels [-3.3 (sd 1.6) pmol/l, P = 0.004] and increased creatinine clearance [+31.5 (sd 32.7) ml/min, P = 0.03] and renal sodium excretion [+9.2 (sd 9.2) mmol/h, P = 0.003]. Lidocaine injection (1 microl, 2%) into the PVN prior to the ICV infusion had no apparent effect per se, but it abolished the AP, CVP, creatinine clearance, and ANG II responses to hypertonic NaCl, as well as reducing the increase in renal sodium excretion (n = 6). Subsequent studies were performed in conscious sheep with chronically implanted electrodes for measurement of renal sympathetic nerve activity (RSNA). The effects of ICV hypertonic NaCl on AP and RSNA were measured before and after PVN-injection of glycine (250 nmol in 500 nl artificial CSF). ICV NaCl increased AP and decreased RSNA (P < 0.001). These effects were significantly reduced by glycine (P = 0.02-0.001, n = 5). Saline injected into the PVN (n = 5) or lidocaine injected outside the PVN (n = 6) had no effect on the response to ICV hypertonic NaCl. These results indicate that the PVN is an important mediator of cerebrally induced homeostatic responses to elevated sodium concentration/hyperosmolality.

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