Receptors and transmission in the brain-gut axis: Potential for novel therapies. V. Fast and slow extrinsic modulation of dorsal vagal complex circuits

R. A. Travagli, R. C. Rogers

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

48 Scopus citations


Vago-vagal reflex circuits in the medulla are responsible for the smooth coordination of the digestive processes carried out from the oral cavity to the transverse colon. In this themes article, we concentrate mostly on electrophysiological studies concerning the extrinsic modulation of these vago-vagal reflex circuits, with a particular emphasis on two types of modulation, i.e., by "fast" classic neurotransmitters and by "slow" neuromodulators. These examples review two of the most potent modulatory processes at work within the dorsal vagal complex, which have dramatic effects on gastrointestinal function. The reader should be mindful of the fact that many more different inputs from other central nervous system (CNS) loci or circulating humoral factors add to this complex mix of modulatory inputs. It is likely that similar long-term modulations of synaptic transmission occur with other neurotransmitters and may represent an important mechanism for the integration and regulation of neuronal behavior. Of course, this fact strongly militates against the success of any single drug or approach in the treatment of motility disorders having a CNS component.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)G595-G601
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Issue number3 44-3
StatePublished - Oct 1 2001


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Physiology (medical)

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