The role of the parabrachial region of the dorsal rostral pons (PB) in mediating control of renal blood flow and of systemic arterial blood pressure was investigated in nine cats anesthetized with chloralose-urethan. Electrical stimulation through electrodes placed stereotaxically in lateral and medial positions in the hypothalamus (LH and MH) in PB and in ventrolateral reticular formation (VLRF) of each cat elicited pronounced systemic arterial pressor responses and renal vasoconstrictions. Stimulation parameters were adjusted so that renal flow responses elicited from each site were equal. Following a unilateral lesion in the PB, responses of renal vasoconstriction induced by hypothalamic stimulation were attenuated, but responses of arterial pressure were not altered. Stimulation of the VLRF, posterior to the lesion, consistently produced undiminished systemic pressor responses and renal vasoconstriction throughout the durations of the experiments excluding decay of renal vascular responsiveness. Thus, the data suggest that pathways mediating renal vasoconstriction in response to hypothalamic stimulation was discrete and pass through the parabrachial region, whereas pathways mediating systemic vasoconstriction in response to hypothalamic stimulation are distinct or less compact.
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