Modulation of heart rate by temporally patterned vagus nerve stimulation in the anesthetized dog.
Despite current knowledge of the myriad physiological effects of vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) in various mammalian species (including humans), the impact of varying stimulation parameters on nerve recruitment and physiological responses is not well understood. We investigated nerve recruitment, cardiovascular responses, and skeletal muscle responses to different temporal patterns of VNS across 39 combinations of stimulation amplitude, frequency, and number of pulses per burst. Anesthetized dogs were implanted with stimulating and recording cuff electrodes around the cervical vagus nerve, whereas laryngeal electromyogram (EMG) and heart rate were recorded. In seven of eight dogs, VNS-evoked bradycardia (defined as ≥10% decrease in heart rate) was achieved by applying stimuli at amplitudes equal to or greater than the threshold for activating slow B-fibers. Temporally patterned VNS (minimum 5 pulses per burst) was sufficient to elicit bradycardia while reducing the concomitant activation of laryngeal muscles by more than 50%. Temporal patterns of VNS can be used to modulate heart rate while minimizing laryngeal motor fiber activation, and this is a novel approach to reduce the side effects produced by VNS.
Yoo, PB; Liu, H; Hincapie, JG; Ruble, SB; Hamann, JJ; Grill, WM
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