Temperature regulation in laboratory mammals following acute toxic insult.
The purpose of this paper is to provide a concise review of the effects of acute chemical toxicity on thermoregulation in mammals, with particular emphasis on the effects of xenobiotic compounds in laboratory rodents. It has been shown that acute administration of compounds such as nickel, cadmium, lead, and some pesticides causes a reduction in the body temperature of mice when tested at normal room temperatures. When provided with the option of selecting their preferred ambient temperature, the toxic-treated animals generally select cool temperatures which augment the hypothermic effect of the toxic compounds. It would appear that many of the xenobiotic compounds have central as well as peripheral effects on the control of body temperature. That is, the hypothermic animals select cool temperatures, a condition indicative of a centrally mediated decrease in the set-point. This decrease in set-point, or regulated hypothermia, may be beneficial to survival since the lethality of most xenobiotic compounds increases with rising body temperature. The observation that acute doses of various compounds leads to behaviorally and autonomically mediated changes in body temperature may have significant implications for the measurement of other biological effects of these chemical agents (e.g., CNS dysfunction, bradycardia, immunosuppression).
Gordon, CJ; Mohler, FS; Watkinson, WP; Rezvani, AH
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