Animal model of neuropathic tachycardia syndrome.

Carson RP, Appalsamy M, Diedrich A, Davis TL, Robertson D
Hypertension. 2001 37 (6): 1357-61

PMID: 11408377 · DOI:10.1161/01.hyp.37.6.1357

Clinically relevant autonomic dysfunction can result from either complete or partial loss of sympathetic outflow to effector organs. Reported animal models of autonomic neuropathy have aimed to achieve complete lesions of sympathetic nerves, but incomplete lesions might be more relevant to certain clinical entities. We hypothesized that loss of sympathetic innervation would result in a predicted decrease in arterial pressure and a compensatory increase in heart rate. Increased heart rate due to loss of sympathetic innervation is seemingly paradoxical, but it provides a mechanistic explanation for clinical autonomic syndromes such as neuropathic postural tachycardia syndrome. Partially dysautonomic animals were generated by selectively lesioning postganglionic sympathetic neurons with 150 mg/kg 6-hydroxydopamine hydrobromide in male Sprague-Dawley rats. Blood pressure and heart rate were monitored using radiotelemetry. Systolic blood pressure decreased within hours postlesion (Delta>20 mm Hg). Within 4 days postlesion, heart rate rose and remained elevated above control levels. The severity of the lesion was determined functionally and pharmacologically by spectral analysis and responsiveness to tyramine. Low-frequency spectral power of systolic blood pressure was reduced postlesion and correlated with the diminished tyramine responsiveness (r=0.9572, P=0.0053). The tachycardia was abolished by treatment with the beta-antagonist propranolol, demonstrating that it was mediated by catecholamines acting on cardiac beta-receptors. Partial lesions of the autonomic nervous system have been hypothesized to underlie many disorders, including neuropathic postural tachycardia syndrome. This animal model may help us better understand the pathophysiology of autonomic dysfunction and lead to development of therapeutic interventions.

MeSH Terms (15)

Adrenergic Agents Animals Autonomic Nervous System Diseases Blood Pressure Disease Models, Animal Heart Heart Rate Male Oxidopamine Rats Rats, Sprague-Dawley Sympathectomy, Chemical Syndrome Tachycardia Tyramine

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