Eupneic Respiratory Rhythm in Awake Goats is Dependent on an Intact Pre-Bötzinger Complex

  • H. V. Forster
  • J. M. Wenninger
  • L. G. Pan
  • M. R. Hodges
  • R. Banzett
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 551)


Different views exist regarding sites within the brain responsible for eupneic respiratory rhythmogenesis. Studies by Lumsden in the 1920’s1,2 indicated that the minimum neural substrate for respiratory rhythm was the medulla but an intact pons was necessary for eupneic rhythm. Recent studies by St. John et al.3, 4 support this concept. Another concept is that the pre-Bötzinger Complex (PBC) is the site of rhythmogenesis, and in the neonatal rat spinal cord-brainstem preparation, the minimum neural substrate for respiratory rhythm is the PBC.5 Another study on awake adult rats showed that greater than 80% destruction of PBC neurons expressing the neurokinin 1 receptor (NK1-R) resulted in an “ataxic” breathing pattern and attenuation of eupneic breathing and CO2 sensitivity, leading to the conclusion that “normal breathing in an intact animal requires an intact PBC”.6 However, St. John et al4 contend that an ataxic breathing pattern is evident with lesions at other medullary sites, and we7 found that lesions in rostral medullary nuclei result in transient interruptions of eupneic breathing. In addition, pre-inspiratory neurons rostral to the PBC are capable of generating a respiratory rhythm.8, 9


Inspiratory Flow Respiratory Rhythm Ibotenic Acid Bilateral Injection Respiratory Sensation 
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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic/Plenum Publishers, New York 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. V. Forster
    • 1
    • 2
  • J. M. Wenninger
    • 1
    • 2
  • L. G. Pan
    • 1
    • 2
  • M. R. Hodges
    • 1
    • 2
  • R. Banzett
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Physiology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Zablocki VA and Department of Physical TherapyMarquette UniversityMilwaukee
  2. 2.Physiology Program, Harvard School of Public Health & Dept of MedicineHarvard Medical School

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