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RVLM C1 neuron ablation normalizes cardiorespiratory control in heart failure

Del Rio R, Andrade DC, Toledo C, Diaz HS (2017) RVLM C1 neuron ablation normalizes cardiorespiratory control in heart failure. Neuroscience 2017 Abstracts 507.13 / NN21. Society for Neuroscience, Washington, DC.

Summary: Heart failure (CHF) is characterized by sympathoexcitation and breathing disorders. The rostral ventrolateral medulla (RVLM) is hyperactive in CHF. However, there is no direct evidence between the relationship of RVLM chronic hyperactivation, sympathoexcitation and progression of cardiac deterioration in CHF. We hypothesized that selective elimination of cathecolaminergic neurons from the RVLM delays cardiac deterioration in CHF rats. CHF was induced by volume overload in male Sprague-Dawley rats (250±20g). Ablation of C1 cells was performed by anti-dopamine-beta hydroxylase (DβH)–saporin toxin (DβH+SAP) injected into the RVLM. The degree of HF was estimated by echocardiography. Cardiac function was assessed by intraventricular PV loops. Arrhythmia index and breathing disorders were scored. Central and peripheral chemoreflex and cardiac autonomic control were also study. Partial elimination of C1 RVLM neurons (≈50%) delay the decrease in fractional shortening in CHF rats (CHF+Veh: 59±5 vs. 45±1 %, p<0.05, pre vs. post vehicle, respectively; CHF+DβH-SAP: 57±4 vs. 51±4 %, p>0.05, pre vs. post toxin, respectively). In addition, compared to CHF vehicle treated rats, CHF+DβH-SAP rats showed (CHF+Veh vs. CHF+DβH-SAP, respectively): i) a reduced cardiac sympathetic drive (-98±12 vs. -52±7 ΔHR, p<0.05), ii) an improvement in both cardiac diastolic (0.009±0.001 vs. 0.004±0.001 mmHg/µl, p<0.05) and systolic function (0.2±0.01 vs. 0.5±0.1 mmHg/µl, p<0.05), iii) a reduced number of arrhythmias (95±20 vs. 48±14 events/hour, p<0.05), and iv) a reduced incidence of breathing disorders (9±1 vs. 6±1 apneas/hour, p<0.05). Finally, the detrimental autonomic and cardiovascular effects induced by central chemoreceptors activation were abolished after C1 neurons ablation in CHF rats. Neither hypoxic nor hypercapnic ventilatory chemoreflex responses were affected by DβH- SAP treatment. Our results showed that the RVLM play a pivotal role on the progression of cardiac deterioration and in the maintenance of autonomic imbalance and breathing disorders in CHF. In addition, our results showed that the sympathoexcitation and cardiac function deterioration induced by central chemoreflex activation is related to the activation of RVLM C1 neurons.

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