Fos-like immunoreactivity in the medulla after acute and chronic angiotensin II infusion

Qian Li, Margaret J. Sullivan, William E. Dale, Eileen M. Hasser, Edward H. Blaine, J. Thomas Cunningham

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20 Scopus citations


Acute and chronic angiotensin (Ang) II hypertension are reported to have different mechanisms that involve differential contributions of the peripheral vasculature and the nervous system. Acute Ang II hypertension is mediated primarily by Ang acting at vascular smooth muscle, whereas chronic Ang II hypertension appears to have a neural component. In our experiments, the transition from a peripheral to a neural effect occurs over 10 hr of Ang II infusion in rats. To identify the role of the central nervous system in this transition, we measured Fos immunoreactivity, an indicator of neural activity, in the nucleus of the solitary tract (NTS), caudal ventrolateral medulla (CVL) and rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVL) in normal, sinoaortic denervated (SAD) and sham SAD rats after 2- or 18-hr Ang II infusion (50 ng/kg/min intravenously). Vehicle (5% dextrose) was infused in normal rats as control. Comparable increases in arterial pressure were produced by 2- and 18-hr Ang II infusion in all groups. Fos was increased in the NTS in sham SAD rats by 2- and 18-hr Ang II infusion (P < .05 vs. vehicle control). In the CVL, only 2-hr Ang II infusion was associated with increased Fos in normal and sham SAD rats (P < .05 vs. vehicle control) but not in SAD rats. In the RVL, 18-hr Ang II infusion elevated Fos in all groups (P < .05 vs. vehicle control). Activation of NTS during Ang II infusion is baroreceptor mediated and independent of infusion duration. Acute Ang II infusion produced a baroreceptor-mediated activation of the CVL, a region associated with baroreflex sympathoinhibition. Chronic Ang II infusion produced a baroreceptor-independent activation of the RVL, a brain area associated with sympathoexcitation, suggesting a centrally mediated increase in sympathetic outflow that may be associated with chronically infused Ang II.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1165-1173
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1998


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