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Am J Physiol. 1986 Sep;251(3 Pt 2):R569-74.

Alpha 1-adrenergic receptor activation depolarizes rat supraoptic neurosecretory neurons in vitro.


Intracellular data were obtained from 35 supraoptic nucleus neurosecretory neurons maintained in vitro in intra-arterially perfused explants of rat hypothalamus. Addition of norepinephrine, phenylephrine, or methoxamine, but not isoproterenol (30-200 microM), consistently induced membrane depolarization, bursting activity, and an associated prolongation in action potential duration, effects that were reversibly antagonized by the alpha 1-antagonist prazosin. Norepinephrine-evoked depolarizations demonstrated no consistent change in membrane resistance and were reduced both by membrane hyperpolarization and by raising extracellular K+. Norepinephrine shortened the time course of spike hyperpolarizing afterpotentials and increased the magnitude of late depolarizing afterpotentials. It is proposed that one of norepinephrine's actions on supraoptic neurons involves K+ channels, perhaps by modulation of a transient K+ current known as A current.

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