Passive Smoke Effects on Cough and Airways in Young Guinea Pigs: Role of Brainstem Substance P

Jesse P. Joad, Paul A. Munch, John M. Bric, Samuel J. Evans, Kent E. Pinkerton, Chao Yin Chen, Ann C. Bonham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Children raised with extended exposure to environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) experience increased cough and wheeze. This study was designed to determine whether extended ETS exposure enhances citric acid-induced cough and bronchoconstriction in young guinea pigs via a neurokinin-1 (NK-1) receptor mechanism at the first central synapse of lung afferent neurons, the nucleus tractus solitarlus. Guinea pigs were exposed to ETS from 1 to 6 weeks of age. At 5 weeks of age, guide cannulae were implanted bilaterally in the medial nucleus tractus solitarius at a site that produced apnea in response to the glutamate agonist D,L-homocysteic acid. At 6 weeks of age, either vehicle or a NK-1 receptor antagonist, SR 140333, was injected into the nucleus tractus solitarius of the conscious guinea pigs who were then exposed to citric acid aerosol. ETS exposure significantly enhanced citric acid-induced cough by 56% and maximal Penh (a measure of airway obstruction) by 43%, effects that were attenuated by the NK-1 receptor antagonist In the nucleus tractus solitarius. We conclude that in young guinea pigs extended exposure to ETS increases citric acid-induced cough and broncho-constriction in part by an NK-1 receptor mechanism in the nucleus tractus solitarius.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)499-504
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine
Issue number4
StatePublished - Feb 15 2004


  • Development
  • Environmental tobacco smoke
  • Guinea pig
  • Nucleus tractus solitarius
  • Substance P

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine


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