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Int J Mol Sci ; 22(16)2021 Aug 07.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-34445224


The tightly localized noradrenergic neurons (NA) in the locus coeruleus (LC) are well recognized as essential for focused arousal and novelty-oriented responses, while many children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) exhibit diminished attention, engagement and orienting to exogenous stimuli. This has led to the hypothesis that atypical LC activity may be involved in ASD. Oxytocin (OXT) neurons and receptors are known to play an important role in social behavior, pair bonding and cognitive processes and are under investigation as a potential treatment for ASD. However, little is known about the neurotransmission from hypothalamic paraventricular (PVN) OXT neurons to LC NA neurons. In this study, we test, in male and female rats, whether PVN OXT neurons excite LC neurons, whether oxytocin is released and involved in this neurotransmission, and whether activation of PVN OXT neurons alters novel object recognition. Using "oxytocin sniffer cells" (CHO cells that express the human oxytocin receptor and a Ca indicator) we show that there is release of OXT from hypothalamic PVN OXT fibers in the LC. Optogenetic excitation of PVN OXT fibers excites LC NA neurons by co-release of OXT and glutamate, and this neurotransmission is greater in males than females. In male, but not in female animals, chemogenetic activation of PVN OXT neurons increases attention to novel objects.

Atenção , Locus Cerúleo/metabolismo , Neurônios/metabolismo , Ocitocina/metabolismo , Núcleo Hipotalâmico Paraventricular/metabolismo , Caracteres Sexuais , Transmissão Sináptica , Animais , Células CHO , Cricetulus , Feminino , Humanos , Masculino , Ocitocina/genética , Ratos , Receptores de Ocitocina/genética , Receptores de Ocitocina/metabolismo
JACC Basic Transl Sci ; 5(5): 484-497, 2020 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32478209


This work shows long-term restoration of the hypothalamic oxytocin (OXT) network preserves OXT release, reduces mortality, cardiac inflammation, fibrosis, and improves autonomic tone and cardiac function in a model of heart failure. Intranasal administration of OXT in patients mimics the short-term changes seen in animals by increasing parasympathetic-and decreasing sympathetic-cardiac activity. This work provides the essential translational foundation to determine if approaches that mimic paraventricular nucleus (PVN) OXT neuron activation, such as safe, noninvasive, and well-tolerated intranasal administration of OXT, can be beneficial in patients with heart failure.

Am J Physiol Heart Circ Physiol ; 319(1): H3-H12, 2020 07 01.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-32412778


Heart failure (HF) is characterized by autonomic imbalance with sympathetic hyperactivity and loss of parasympathetic tone. Intracardiac ganglia (ICG) neurons represent the final common pathway for vagal innervation of the heart and strongly regulate cardiac functions. This study tests whether ICG cholinergic neuron activation mitigates the progression of cardiac dysfunction and reduces mortality that occurs in HF. HF was induced by transaortic constriction (TAC) in male transgenic Long-Evans rats expressing Cre recombinase within choline acetyltransferase (ChAT) neurons. ChAT neurons were selectively activated by expression and activation of excitatory designer receptors exclusively activated by designer receptors (DREADDs) by clozapine-N-oxide (TAC + treatment and sham-treated groups). Control animals expressed DREADDs but received saline (sham and TAC groups). A separate set of animals were telemetry instrumented to record blood pressure (BP) and heart rate (HR). Acute activation of ICG neurons resulted in robust reductions in BP (∼20 mmHg) and HR (∼100 beats/min). All groups of animals were subjected to weekly echocardiography and treadmill stress tests from 3 to 6 wk post-TAC/sham surgery. Activation of ICG cholinergic neurons reduced the left ventricular systolic dysfunction (reductions in ejection fraction, fractional shortening, stroke volume, and cardiac output) and cardiac autonomic dysfunction [reduced HR recovery (HRR) post peak effort] observed in TAC animals. Additionally, activation of ICG ChAT neurons reduced mortality by 30% compared with untreated TAC animals. These data suggest that ICG cholinergic neuron activation reduces cardiac dysfunction and improves survival in HF, indicating that ICG neuron activation could be a novel target for treating HF.NEW & NOTEWORTHY Intracardiac ganglia form the final common pathway for the parasympathetic innervation of the heart. This study has used a novel chemogenetic approach within transgenic ChAT-Cre rats [expressing only Cre-recombinase in choline acetyl transferase (ChAT) neurons] to selectively increase intracardiac cholinergic parasympathetic activity to the heart in a pressure overload-induced heart failure model. The findings from this study confirm that selective activation of intracardiac cholinergic neurons lessens cardiac dysfunction and mortality seen in heart failure, identifying a novel downstream cardiac-selective target for increasing cardioprotective parasympathetic activity in heart failure.

Neurônios Colinérgicos/fisiologia , Insuficiência Cardíaca/fisiopatologia , Coração/inervação , Função Ventricular , Animais , Sistema Nervoso Autônomo/fisiopatologia , Pressão Sanguínea , Colina O-Acetiltransferase/genética , Colina O-Acetiltransferase/metabolismo , Neurônios Colinérgicos/efeitos dos fármacos , Neurônios Colinérgicos/metabolismo , Clozapina/análogos & derivados , Clozapina/farmacologia , Coração/fisiopatologia , Insuficiência Cardíaca/etiologia , Frequência Cardíaca , Masculino , Ratos , Ratos Long-Evans , Obstrução do Fluxo Ventricular Externo/complicações