The hypothesis tested was that some cardiac reflexes can be mediated by the neural mechanisms in thoracic sympathetic ganglia in addition to those existing in the spinal cord or brain stem. In mongrel dogs anesthetized with pentobarbital sodium the left stellate (SG) and middle cervical (MCG) ganglion were decentralized, and the left thoracic vagosympathetic trunk was cut cranial to the MCG and caudal to the MCG but above the heart. The left thoracic vagosympathetic trunk below the MCG was then stimulated afferently. A single bolus of 2-[14C]deoxyglucose was injected intravenously and the stimuli repeated periodically toward the decentralized ganglia for 45 min. The heart and ganglia were then removed, frozen, and sectioned for autoradiography. Significant increases in glucose utilization were found in both the SG and MCG compared with ganglia from nonstimulated control animals. Significant increases in the glucose utilization of the endocardial third of the left ventricle were also observed in the reflexly stimulated hearts. Neural mechanisms in the acutely decentralized SG and MCG could modify cardiac glucose utilization within specific areas of the heart. In addition, such ganglionic mechanisms may be concentrated within the caudal half of the SG. These data suggest that many neurons in the thoracic autonomic ganglia may be involved in local cardiac reflexes.
- Copyright © 1985 the American Physiological Society