Deakin University
Browse

File(s) under permanent embargo

Medullary neurones regulate hypothalamic corticotropin-releasing factor cell responses to an emotional stressor

journal contribution
posted on 2001-08-15, 00:00 authored by C Dayas, K Buller, Trevor DayTrevor Day
Hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis activation is a hallmark of the stress response. In the case of physical stressors, there is considerable evidence that medullary catecholamine neurones are critical to the activation of the paraventricular nucleus corticotropin-releasing factor cells that constitute the apex of the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis. In contrast, it has been thought that hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis responses to emotional stressors do not involve brainstem neurones. To investigate this issue we have mapped patterns of restraint-induced neuronal c-fos expression in intact animals and in animals prepared with either paraventricular nucleus-directed injections of a retrograde tracer, lesions of paraventricular nucleus catecholamine terminals, or lesions of the medulla corresponding to the A1 or A2 noradrenergic cell groups. Restraint-induced patterns of neuronal activation within the medulla of intact animals were very similar to those previously reported in response to physical stressors, including the fact that most stressor-responsive, paraventricular nucleus-projecting cells were certainly catecholaminergic and probably noradrenergic. Despite this, the destruction of paraventricular nucleus catecholamine terminals with 6-hydroxydopamine did not alter corticotropin-releasing factor cell responses to restraint. However, animals with ibotenic acid lesions encompassing either the A1 or A2 noradrenergic cell groups displayed significantly suppressed corticotropin-releasing factor cell responses to restraint. Notably, these medullary lesions also suppressed neuronal responses in the medial amygdala, an area that is now considered critical to hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis responses to emotional stressors and that is also known to display a significant increase in noradrenaline turnover during restraint.

We conclude that medullary neurones influence corticotropin-releasing factor cell responses to emotional stressors via a multisynaptic pathway that may involve a noradrenergic input to the medial amygdala. These results overturn the idea that hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis response to emotional stressors can occur independently of the brainstem.

History

Journal

Neuroscience

Volume

105

Issue

3

Pagination

707 - 719

Publisher

Elsevier BV

Location

Amsterdam, The Netherlands

ISSN

0306-4522

eISSN

1873-7544

Language

eng

Publication classification

C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2001, IBRO

Usage metrics

    Research Publications

    Categories

    No categories selected

    Exports

    RefWorks
    BibTeX
    Ref. manager
    Endnote
    DataCite
    NLM
    DC