Role of Chemoreceptor Activation in Hemodynamic Responses to Electrical Stimulation of the Carotid Sinus in Conscious Rats
Electric carotid baroreflex activation has been used to treat patients with resistant hypertension. It is hypothesized that, in conscious rats, combined activation of carotid baro- and chemoreceptors afferences attenuates the reflex hypotension. Rats were divided into 4 groups: (1) control group, with unilateral denervation of the right carotid chemoreceptors; (2) chemoreceptor denervation group, with bilateral ligation of the carotid body artery; (3) baroreceptor denervation group, with unilateral denervation of the left carotid baroreceptors and right carotid chemoreceptors; and (4) carotid bifurcation denervation group, with denervation of the left carotid baroreceptors and chemoreceptors, plus denervation of the right carotid chemoreceptors. Animals were subjected to 4 rounds of electric stimulation (5 V, 1 ms), with 15, 30, 60, and 90 Hz applied randomly for 20 s. Electric stimulation caused greater hypotensive responses in the chemoreceptor denervation group than in the control group, at 60 Hz (−37 versus −19 mm Hg) and 90 Hz (−33 versus −19 mm Hg). The baroreceptor denervation group showed hypertensive responses at all frequencies of stimulation. In contrast, the carotid sinus denervation group showed no hemodynamic responses. The control group presented no changes in heart rate, whereas the chemoreceptor denervation group and the baroreceptor denervation group showed bradycardic responses. These data demonstrate that carotid chemoreceptor activation attenuates the reflex hypotension caused by combined electric stimulation of the carotid sinus and the carotid sinus nerve in conscious rats. These findings may provide useful insight for clinical studies using baroreflex activation therapy in resistant hypertension and heart failure.
- Received February 8, 2015.
- Revision received March 1, 2015.
- Accepted June 25, 2015.
- © 2015 American Heart Association, Inc.