In part, the exercise pressor reflex is believed to be evoked by chemical stimuli signaling that blood supply to exercising muscles is not adequate to meet its metabolic demands. There is evidence that either ATP or adenosine may function as one of these chemical stimuli. For example, muscle interstitial concentrations of both substances have been found to increase during exercise. This finding led us to test the hypothesis that popliteal arterial injection of α,β-methylene ATP (5, 20, and 50 μg/kg), which stimulates P2X receptors, and 2-chloroadenosine (25 μg/kg), which stimulates P1 receptors, evokes reflex pressor responses in decerebrate, unanesthetized cats. We found that popliteal arterial injection of the two highest doses of α,β-methylene ATP evoked pressor responses, whereas popliteal arterial injection of 2-chloroadenosine did not. In addition, the pressor responses evoked by α,β-methylene ATP were blocked either by section of the sciatic nerve or by prior popliteal arterial injection of pyridoxal phosphate-6-azophenyl-2′,4′-disulfonic acid (10 mg/kg), a selective P2-receptor antagonist. We conclude that the stimulation of P2 receptors, which are accessible through the vascular supply of skeletal muscle, evokes reflex pressor responses. In addition, our findings are consistent with the hypothesis that the stimulation of P2 receptors comprises part of the metabolic error signal evoking the exercise pressor reflex.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physiology (medical)