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Shivering and nonshivering thermogenic responses of cold-exposed rats to hypothalamic warming



Shivering and nonshivering thermogenic responses of cold-exposed rats to hypothalamic warming



American Journal of Physiology 228(5): 1519-1524



The concurrent neural control of two thermoregulatory responses, shivering thermogenesis (ST) and nonshivering thermogenesis (NST), was investigated in chronically implanted cold-exposed rats. The effects of heating the preoptic/anterior hypothalamus (POAH) on shivering and on the rate of oxygen consumption (Vo2) were measured in these unanesthetized animals. With ambient temperature maintained constant (at some value between 10 and 16 degrees C), warming the hypothalamus 2-3 degrees C resulted in a significant decrease in Vo2 (Psmaller than 0.001) and an increase in shivering (Psmaller than .01), these responses being reversed on cessation of hypothalamic warming. These results are consistent with the proposal that, in the cold-exposed animal, elevated POAH temperatures directly inhibit NST even though shivering may increase (possibly as a compensation for the decrease in nonshivering heat production). They also rule out the possibility that, in the rat, signals from cutaneous and hypothalamic thermoreceptors are integrated in an indentical manner by the neural controllers for ST and NST.

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Accession: 017028355

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PMID: 1130555


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