Neurotoxic lesion of the mesencephalic reticular formation and/or the posterior hypothalamus does not alter waking in the cat.

Article date: 1991/1/25

PubMed ID: 1675907

Journal name: Brain research (ISSN: 0006-8993)


In order to re-evaluate the role of two putative waking systems, we injected a neural cell body toxin, ibotenic acid (IA) (45 micrograms/microliters), into the mesencephalic reticular formation (MRF) and/or the posterior hypothalamus (PH). On the one hand, when the cell body destruction was only restricted to the MRF, the IA microinjection was followed by a temporary high voltage and slow neocortical electroencephalogram (EEG) during the first 24 postoperative hours and by a subsequent long term increase in waking which lasted 8-12 h. After the first postoperative day, there were no motor disturbances, no aphagia nor adypsia, no alteration of cortical activation and no modification of thermoregulation or of the sleep-waking cycle. On the other hand, the IA microinjection into the PH induced a hypothermia during the first postoperative night and a dramatic transient hypersomnia immediately after the disappearance of the anesthesia (14-24 h after the IA injection). On the third day, all cats recovered control level of paradoxical sleep (PS), slow wave sleep (SWS) and cerebral temperature. They presented normal motor behavior but they were not able to eat by themselves during the first postoperative week. Finally, when the lesions of the MRF and the PH were realized in one single operation, the cats were first motionless in a comatose state for 2-3 days. This state was accompanied by a transitory hypothermia and the suppression of a spontaneous or evoked cortical low voltage fast activity. However, from the 2nd postoperative week, both behavioral and EEG waking re-occurred. By contrast, the two successive operations (MRF followed by PH) did not induce a comatose state. We did not observe any deficit in motor behavior, and the sleep-waking cycle was quite normal as from the second postlesion day. In the MRF-PH-lesioned cats, the injection of alpha-methyl-p-tyrosine (150 mg/kg) induced a large decrease in waking and a moderate increase in PS. In the MRF-lesioned cats, IA produced a large area of cell body loss, centered in the MRF, that extended from levels A2 to A6 of stereotaxic planes and sometimes encroached upon the red nucleus and the substantia nigra. In the PH-lesioned cats, the histological analysis revealed a great loss of cell bodies in the PH extended from levels A8 to A12.5. The damage included the lateral and posterior hypothalamic areas and sometimes the tuberomamillary nucleus. In MRF- and PH-lesioned cats, the cell body loss extended from levels A2 to A12.5.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 400 WORDS)

Author List: Denoyer M, Sallanon M, Buda C, Kitahama K, Jouvet M

Publication Types: Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Substances mentioned in the article: Methyltyrosines; Ibotenic Acid; alpha-Methyltyrosine; Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase;

Mesh terms: Animals; Arousal/drug effects; Behavior, Animal/drug effects; Body Temperature/drug effects; Cats; Electroencephalography; Electromyography; Electrooculography; Female; Hydrogen-Ion Concentration; Hypothalamus, Posterior/anatomy & histology; Ibotenic Acid/pharmacology; Male; Mesencephalon/anatomy & histology; Methyltyrosines/administration & dosage; Microinjections; Reticular Formation/physiology; Stereotaxic Techniques; Tyrosine 3-Monooxygenase/antagonists & inhibitors; Wakefulness/physiology; alpha-Methyltyrosine;

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