CRF1 and CRF2 receptors in the bed nucleus of the stria terminalis modulate the cardiovascular responses to acute restraint stress in rats
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The corticotropin-releasing factor (CRF) is involved in behavioral and physiological responses to emotional stress throughits actioninseverallimbic structures,including the bednucleus ofthe stria terminalis (BNST). Nevertheless, the role of CRF1 and CRF2 receptors in the BNST in cardiovascular adjustments during aversive threat is unknown. Therefore, in the present study we investigated the involvement of CRF receptors within the BNST in cardiovascular responses evoked by acute restraint stress in rats. For this, we evaluated the effects of bilateral treatment of the BNST with selective agonists and antagonists of either CRF1 or CRF2 receptors in the arterial pressure and heart rate increase and the decrease in tail skin temperature induced by restraint stress. Microinjection of the selective CRF1 receptor antagonist CP376395 into the BNST reduced the pressor and tachycardiac responses caused by restraint. Conversely, BNST treatment with the selective CRF1 receptor agonist CRF increased restraint-evoked arterial pressure and HR responses and reduced the fall in tail skin temperature response. All effects of CRF were inhibited by local BNST pretreatment with CP376395. The selective CRF2 receptor antagonist antisalvagine-30 reduced the arterial pressure increase and the fall in tail skin temperature. The selective CRF2 receptor agonist urocortin-3 increased restraint-evoked pressor and tachycardiac responses and reduced the drop in cutaneous temperature. All effects of urocortin-3 were abolished by local BNST pretreatment with antisalvagine-30. These findings indicate an involvement of both CRF1 and CRF2 receptors in the BNST in cardiovascular adjustments during emotional stress.