Shivering and nonshivering thermogenic responses of cold exposed rats to hypothalamic warming

C. A. Fuller, Barbara A Horwitz, J. M. Horowitz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

31 Scopus citations


The concurrent neural control of two thermoregulatory responses, shivering thermogenesis (ST) and nonshivering thermogenesis (NST), was investigated in chronically implanted cold exposed rats. The effects of heating the preoptic/anterior hypothalamus (POAH) on shivering and on the rate of oxygen consumption (Vo2) were measured in these unanesthetized animals. With ambient temperature maintained constant (at some value between 10 and 16°C), warming the hypothalamus 2-3°C resulted in a significant decrease in Vo2 (P<0.001) and an increase in shivering (P<0.01), these responses being reversed on cessation of hypothalamic warming. These results are consistent with the proposal that, in the cold exposed animal, elevated POAH temperatures directly inhibit NST even though shivering may increase (possibly as a compensation for the decrease in nonshivering heat production). They also rule out the possibility that, in the rat, signals from cutaneous and hypothalamic thermoreceptors are integrated in an identical manner by the neural controllers for ST and NST.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAmerican Journal of Physiology
Number of pages6
StatePublished - 1975

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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