The carotid body (CB) consists of a small, highly vascularised, cluster of cells known as chemoreceptors located at the bifurcation of the common carotid artery. These chemoreceptors “taste” chemical stimuli in the blood and convey impulses to the cardiorespiratory centres of the medulla which then cause appropriate alterations in heart rate, blood pressure and respiration. This information is relayed to the medulla via the glossopharyngeal (IXth cranial) nerve. We are interested in another group of chemoreceptors, referred to as vagal paraganglia, and in particular those found at the bifurcation of the superior laryngeal nerve (SLN), which is the largest paraganglion of the vagus (Xth cranial) nerve in the rat (Hughes et al. 2003).
Superior laryngeal nerve Paraganglia Carotid body Vagus nerve Chemoreceptor Propranolol
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We wish to acknowledge support of The Wellcome Trust (UK) and the School of Medicine and Medical Science UCD, Dublin.
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