Reflex secretion of proteins into submandibular saliva in conscious rats, before and after preganglionic sympathectomy

R. Matsuo, J. R. Garrett, G. B. Proctor, G. H. Carpenter

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33 Citations (Scopus)


1. An indwelling catheter was placed in the left submandibular duct of rats, under pentobarbitone anaesthesia, and connected to an outflow cannula that emerged above the skull. 2. Saliva was collected from the outflow cannula in conscious rats, the same day after recovery from anaesthesia, under four different reflex conditions: grooming, heat exposure, rejection of a bitter tasting substance and feeding on softened chow, repeated in different orders. 3. Saliva flow was greatest for grooming and least for rejection. Protein concentrations were least with heat but much greater and similar for the other stimulations. Acinar peroxidase activity was high for feeding, intermediate for grooming and rejection, and again lowest with heat. Tubular tissue kallikrein activities were moderately low, being greatest with feeding and least with grooming. Secretory immunoglobulin A (SIgA) concentration was least with heat and similar for the other stimulations. 4. The next day, under pentobarbitone anaesthesia, the left preganglionic sympathetic trunk was sectioned (sympathetic decentralization) and, after recovery, the preceding stimulations were repeated. Flow of saliva showed little change, but protein and peroxidase concentrations and outputs decreased dramatically with grooming, rejection and feeding to levels similar to those with heat, which showed little change. Tissue kallikrein was lowered less dramatically, but the reductions in output were significant except with heat. Patterns of proteins resolved by electrophoresis changed for grooming, rejection and feeding and became similar to saliva from heat, which showed little change. No significant effects on SIgA concentrations occurred. 5. Gland weights from the sympathetically decentralized side were greater than from the intact side at the end of the experiments and histologically showed retention of acinar mucin. 6. Thus reflex sympathetic drive varied with the different stimulations; it was least during heat, but it had pronounced effects on acinar secretion of proteins during the other stimulations. At the same time this sympathetic drive had less impact on tissue kallikrein secretion from tubules and had little influence on flow or the concentration of SIgA secreted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)175-184
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Physiology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology


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