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Cardiovascular development in embryos of the American alligator Alligator mississippiensis: effects of chronic and acute hypoxia
University of California Irvine, USA.
Linköping University, Department of Physics, Chemistry and Biology, Zoology . Linköping University, The Institute of Technology.
2005 (English)In: Journal of Experimental Biology, ISSN 0022-0949, Vol. 208, 31-39 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Chronic hypoxic incubation is a common tool used to address the plasticity of morphological and physiological characteristics during vertebrate development. In this study chronic hypoxic incubation of embryonic American alligators resulted in both morphological (mass) and physiological changes. During normoxic incubation embryonic mass, liver mass and heart mass increased throughout the period of study, while yolk mass fell. Chronic hypoxia (10%O2) resulted in a reduced embryonic mass at 80% and 90% of incubation. This reduction in embryonic mass was accompanied by a relative enlargement of the heart at 80% and 90% of incubation, while relative embryonic liver mass was similar to the normoxic group. Normoxic incubated alligators maintained a constant heart rate during the period of study, while mean arterial pressure rose continuously. Both levels of hypoxic incubation (15% and 10%O2) resulted in a lower mean arterial pressure at 90% of incubation, while heart rate was lower in the 10%O2 group only. Acute (5 min) exposure to 10%O2 in the normoxic group resulted in a biphasic response, with a normotensive bradycardia occurring during the period of exposure and a hypertensive tachycardic response occurring during recovery. The embryos incubated under hypoxia also showed a blunted response to acute hypoxic stress. In conclusion, the main responses elicited by chronic hypoxic incubation, namely, cardiac enlargement, blunted hypoxic response and systemic vasodilation, may provide chronically hypoxic embryos with a new physiological repertoire for responding to hypoxia.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2005. Vol. 208, 31-39 p.
Keyword [en]
cardiovascular, embryonic, American alligator, Alligator mississippiensis, development, hypoxia.
National Category
Natural Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-39754DOI: 10.1242/jeb.01355Local ID: 51121OAI: diva2:260603
Available from: 2009-10-10 Created: 2009-10-10 Last updated: 2010-04-14

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Altimiras, Jordi
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