Normal breathing requires preBötzinger complex neurokinin-1 receptor-expressing neurons

Paul A. Gray, Wiktor A. Janczewski, Nicholas Mellen, Donald R. McCrimmon, Jack L. Feldman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

403 Scopus citations

Abstract

The normal breathing rhythm in mammals is hypothesized to be generated by neurokinin-1 receptor (NK1R)-expressing neurons in the preBötzinger complex (preBötC), a medullary region proposed to contain the kernel of the circuits generating respiration. If this hypothesis is correct, then complete destruction of preBötC NK1R neurons should severely perturb and perhaps even fatally arrest breathing. Here we show that specific and near complete bilateral (but not unilateral) destruction of preBötC NK1R neurons results in both an ataxic breathing pattern with markedly altered blood gases and pH, and pathological responses to challenges such as hyperoxia, hypoxia and anesthesia. Thus, these ∼600 neurons seem necessary for the generation of normal breathing in rats.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)927-930
Number of pages4
JournalNature Neuroscience
Volume4
Issue number9
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 12 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)

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