The maturation of heart rate control in the Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus)
2015 (English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Fetal development of autonomic cardiac control has been thoroughly investigated in chickens, but the maturation of the autonomic nervous system after hatching has gained little attention. At hatch the heart is under a feeble nervous control and there are indications suggesting a rapid maturation process during the first two weeks of postnatal life. We aimed to characterize the maturation by measuring heart rate at baseline and stressful conditions during the first 5 weeks of life in the Red Junglefowl and using autonomic antagonists to quantify the contribution of sympathetic and parasympathetic activity. We also compared the Red Junglefowl to the domestic broiler chickens at hatch to investigate the impact of domestication processes on heart rate regulation.
During the first two postnatal weeks, baseline and stress heart rate progressively increased. After two weeks baseline heart rate decreased while heart rate during acute stress remained high. Adrenergic tone in Red Junglefowl increased as well early suggesting that the increase in heart rate was driven predominantly by adrenergic contributions. The adrenergic tone decreased by age after postnatal week one explaining the concomitant reduction in basal heart rate during this period. Broiler chickens possessed a strong cholinergic tone at hatch indicating that parasympathetic control has been favored perhaps due to heavy selection for somatic growth.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-117421OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-117421DiVA: diva2:808017