The dorsal motor nucleus of the vagus (DMV) receives more noradrenergic terminals than any other medullary nucleus; few studies, however, have examined the effects of norepinephrine (NE) on DMV neurons. Using whole cell recordings in thin slices, we determined the effects of NE on identified gastric-projecting DMV neurons. Twenty-five percent of DMV neurons were unresponsive to NE, whereas the remaining 75% responded to NE with either an excitation (49%), an inhibition (26%), or an inhibition followed by an excitation (4%). Antrum/pylorus- and corpus-projecting neurons responded to NE with a similar percentage of excitatory (49 and 59%, respectively) and inhibitory (20% for both groups) responses. A lower percentage of excitatory (37%) and a higher percentage of inhibitory (36%) responses were, however, observed in fundus-projecting neurons. In all groups, pretreatment with prazosin or phenylephrine antagonized or mimicked the NE-induced excitation, respectively. Pretreatment with yohimbine or UK-14304 antagonized or mimicked the NE-induced inhibition, respectively. These data suggest that NE depolarization is mediated by α1-adrenoceptors, whereas NE hyperpolarization is mediated by α1-adrenoceptors. In 16 neurons depolarized by NE, amplitude of the action potential afterhyperpolarization (AHP) and its kinetics of decay (τ) were significantly reduced vs. control. No differences were found on the amplitude and τ of AHP in neurons hyperpolarized by NE. Using immunohistochemical techniques, we found that the distribution of tyrosine hydroxylase fibers within the DMV was significantly different within the mediolateral extent of DMV; however, distribution of cells responding to NE did not show a specific pattern of localization.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Journal||American Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology|
|Issue number||2 49-2|
|State||Published - Feb 2004|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physiology (medical)