- ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV
Hypoxia-induced chemosensory activity in the carotid body (CB) may be enhanced by the sympathetic regulation of vascular tone in the CB. In the present study, we recorded cervical sympathetic nerve activity in rats exposed to hypoxia, and examined noradrenaline (NA)-and serotonin (5-HT)-induced intracellular Ca2+ ([Ca2+](i)) responses in smooth muscle cells and pericytes in isolated blood vessels from the CB. Multifiber electrical activity recorded from the cervical sympathetic trunk was increased during the inhalation of hypoxic gas. NA induced [Ca2+](i) increases in smooth muscle cells in arteriole specimens, whereas 5-HT did not cause any [Ca2+](i) responses. However, NA did not induce [Ca2+](i) increases in pericytes in capillaries, whereas 5-HT did and this response was inhibited by the 5-HT2 receptor antagonist, ketanserin. In conclusion, cervical sympathetic nerves enhanced by hypoxia may reduce blood flow in the CB in order to increase chemosensitivity. Thus, hypoxic chemosensitivity in the CB may involve a positive feedback mechanism via sympathetic nerves. (C) 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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