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Sci Total Environ. 1994 Jun 30;150(1-3):215-6.

Effect of acute and chronic cobalt administration on carotid body chemoreceptors responses.

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Institute of Physiological Sciences, G. D'Annunzio University, Chieti, Italy.


Chronic cobalt exposure leads to release and production of erythropoietin and consequently to polycythemia. Accordingly, cellular elements sensitive to oxygen in the carotid body, would manifest responses during acute and chronic cobalt administration. The carotid body, detects gas changes (PO2, PCO2/pH) in the arterial blood and regulates ventilation and circulation by the afferent nerve discharge. We hypothesized that cobalt interacts with an oxygen sensitive mechanism in the carotid chemoreception and in erythropoietin producing cells. Twelve cats were anesthetized, paralysed and artificially ventilated; few fiber preparation of carotid sinus nerve were recorded during close intraarterial injection of cobalt. In another protocol, 12 rats received an intraperitoneal dose of CoCl2 (10 mg/kg) daily for 6 weeks. At the end, the carotid body was fixed in situ by superfusion. Ultrastructural and morphometric studies were made. Acute administration (0.08-2.3 mumol) promptly stimulated the chemoreceptor afferents. Type I cells increased significantly along with erythropoiesis in the chronic cobalt treated rats. The stimulatory effects of cobalt on the carotid body chemoreceptor showed that sensitive mechanisms in the kidney and in the carotid body are similar, and cobalt interacts with the physiological responses of oxygen.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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