Indexed on: 18 Dec '07Published on: 18 Dec '07Published in: European Journal of Pharmacology
We have previously reported that l-glutamate (L-glu) injected into the ventral portion of medial prefrontal cortex (vMPFC) of unanesthetized normotensive Wistar rats elicited cardiovascular responses. In the present study we investigated whether the spontaneously hypertensive rat (SHR) exhibit abnormal cardiovascular responses after L-glu microinjection in the vMPFC. Microinjections of L-glu (3, 9, 27, 81 or 150 nmol/200 nl) caused long-lasting dose-related depressor and bradycardiac responses in unanesthetized SHR (n=6, each dose). Pressor and tachycardiac responses were evoked after the injection of 81 nmol of L-glu in the vMPFC of normotensive Wistar rats (n=6). Systemic pretreatment with the beta1-adrenoceptor antagonist atenolol (1.5 mg/kg, i.v.) had no effect on L-glu cardiovascular responses evoked in the SHR (n=5). However, the treatment with the muscarinic antagonist homatropine methyl bromide (1 mg/kg, i.v.) blocked the bradycardiac response to L-glu, without significant effects on depressor response evoked by L-glu in the SHR (n=5). These results indicate that the bradycardiac response to the injection of L-glu injection in the vMPFC is due to activation of the parasympathetic system and not to inhibition of the cardiac sympathetic input. In conclusion, results indicate opposite cardiovascular responses when L-glu was microinjected in the vMPFC of unanesthetized SHR or normotensive. The bradycardiac response observed in the SHR was due to parasympathetic activation and was not affected by pharmacological blockade of the cardiac sympathetic output.