Hypoxic arousal in intact and carotid chemodenervated sleeping cats

J. A. Neubauer, T. V. Santiago, N. H. Edelman

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18 Scopus citations


To determine whether the carotid chemoreceptors or hyperpnea are required for arousal from sleep by hypoxia, 14 sleep-deprived cats were studied during slow-wave (SWS) and rapid-eye-movement (REM) sleep. Rapid hypoxia was produced by inhalation of 5% O2 in N2 or 6% CO in 40% O2 by intact cats and 5% O2 in N2 after carotid body denervation. Preliminary studies identified a period of SWS unassociated with spontaneous arousals. In 69 studies during SWS unassociated with spontaneous arousals, arterial O2 saturation (SaO2) values at arousal were: 47.1 ± 1.5% (mean ± SE) (5% O2, intact); 48.9 ± 1.4% (6% CO, intact); and 49.9 ± 2.0% (5% O2, denervated). During SWS associated with spontaneous arousals, SaO2, values at arousal were 71.6% ± 1.8% (5% O2, intact). Arousal from REM occurred at significantly lower values: 31.7 ± 3.9% (6% CO, intact) and 43.5 ± 2.3% (5% O2, intact). During both SWS and REM, inhalation of 5% O2 by intact animals caused a substantial increase in ventilation while 6% CO did not. We conclude that more severe hypoxia is required for arousal from SWS when studies are done in a period unassociated with spontaneous arousals than from SWS associated with spontaenous arousals. Hypoxic arousal does not appear to require activation of the carotid bodies or hyperpnea.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1294-1299
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Applied Physiology Respiratory Environmental and Exercise Physiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1981

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Endocrinology

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