This study was conducted to investigate the effects of centrally administered baclofen on blood pressure and heart rate in conscious spontaneously hypertensive (SHR) and normotensive Wistar-Kyoto (WKY) rats. Administration of baclofen (1.0 μg/kg) into the lateral cerebral ventricle (icv) produced an increase in mean arterial pressure (MAP) in both SHR and WKY rats. The increase in MAP was significantly lower in SHR (13 ± 3 mmHg) when compared with WKY (27 ± 5 mmHg). The changes in heart rate (HR) were variable, from no change to a very small increase and did not differ significantly between SHR and WKY rats. The ability of baclofen to interfere with baroreceptor reflexes was also tested in separate experiments. In SHR, icv injection of baclofen (1.0 μg/kg) significantly suppressed the pressor response and bradycardia evoked by phenylephrine 3.0 μg/kg iv, whereas in WKY, the pressor and HR responses to similar injections of phenylephrine were not affected by icv baclofen. Similarly, baclofen treatment modifed hypotensive response and reflex tachycardia induced by nitroprusside (10.0 μg/kg) iv in SHR but not in WKY rats. Administration of sympathetic ganglionic blocker hexamethonium (HEX; 25 mg/kg) iv produced an equivalent decrease in MAP between SHR and WKY following icv injection of baclofen (1.0 μg/kg). These results suggest that the effects of baclofen on the baroreceptor reflexes in SHR may not be mediated by a change in peripheral sympathetic tone.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)