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Current Neuropharmacology


ISSN (Print): 1570-159X
ISSN (Online): 1875-6190

Neurochemicals Involved in Medullary Control of Common Carotid Blood Flow

Author(s): Chi-Li Gong, Yuk-Man Leung, Ming-Ren Wang, Nai-Nu Lin, Tony Jer-Fu Lee and Jon-Son Kuo

Volume 11, Issue 5, 2013

Page: [513 - 520] Pages: 8

DOI: 10.2174/1570159X113119990044

Price: $65


The common carotid artery (CCA) supplies intra- and extra-cranial vascular beds. An area in the medulla controlling CCA blood flow is defined as the dorsal facial area (DFA) by Kuo et al. in 1987. In the DFA, presynaptic nitrergic and/or glutamatergic fibers innervate preganglionic nitrergic and/or cholinergic neurons which give rise to the preganglionic fibers of the parasympathetic 7th and 9th cranial nerves. Released glutamate from presynaptic nitrergic and/or glutamatergic fibers can activate N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) and α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methylisoxazole-4- propionic acid (AMPA) receptors on preganglionic nitrergic and/or cholinergic neurons. By modulating this glutamate release, several neurochemicals including serotonin, arginine, nitric oxide, nicotine, choline and ATP in the DFA regulate CCA blood flow. Understanding the neurochemical regulatory mechanisms can provide important insights of the physiological roles of the DFA, and may help develop therapeutic strategies for diseases involving CCA blood flow, such as migraine, hypertensive disease, Alzheimer’s disease and cerebral ischemic stroke.

Keywords: Carotid artery, Cerebral blood flow, Medulla, Parasympathetic nucleus, Vascular regulation, Neurotransmitter

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