Graded reductions in hindlimb perfusion in dogs exercising at 2 miles/h (0% grade) elicited reflex pressor responses by what is referred to as the “muscle chemoreflex.” To determine the extent to which arterial baroreceptor reflexes oppose the muscle chemoreflex, we elicited pressor responses to muscle ischemia before and after chronic surgical denervation of the arterial baroreceptors. The muscle chemoreflex showed a threshold beyond which systemic pressure rose approximately 3 mmHg for each 1-mmHg decrease in hindlimb perfusion pressure when the arterial baroreceptors were intact. Arterial baroreceptor denervation approximately doubled the pressor responses, i.e., systemic pressure rose by approximately 6 mmHg for each 1-mmHg fall in hindlimb perfusion pressure, without alteration in threshold. We conclude that during mild dynamic exercise, the arterial baroreflexes oppose the pressor response to graded reductions in hindlimb perfusion, reducing it by approximately 50%. When unopposed by the arterial baroreflexes the muscle chemoreflex exhibits a gain (ratio of change in systemic pressure to change in hindlimb perfusion pressure) of approximately -6; thus this reflex can correct by 85% the decrease in muscle perfusion pressure caused by partial vascular occlusion.
- Copyright © 1990 the American Physiological Society