In an attempt to understand the changes of circulating neuropeptide Y (NPY) during hypoxia, the plasma level of NPY was investigated by radioimmunoassay. Exposure of rats to hypobaric hypoxia at an altitude of 18,000 ft for 4 weeks causes an increase of pulmonary pressure and an elevation of plasma NPY-like immunoreactivity (NPY-LI). However, the systemic blood pressure was not elevated by this chronic hypoxia. Also, plasma noradrenaline (NA) estimated by chromatographic analysis (HPLC-ECD) was not markedly raised. Failure of bretylium and guanethidine, sympathetic neuron blockers, in reducing the plasma NPY-LI level of these rats ruled out the participation of adrenergic nervous terminals. Adrenal medulla seems responsible for this elevation of plasma NPY-LI because this magnitude disappeared in adrenalectomized rats. These data suggest that chronic hypoxia induced an elevation of circulating NPY from the adrenal gland of rats.
- Neuropeptide Y
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