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Effects of anti-histaminic and anti-cholinergic substances on human thermoregulation during cold provocation
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Environmental Physiology.
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Environmental Physiology.
KTH, School of Technology and Health (STH), Environmental Physiology.
2010 (English)In: Brain Research Bulletin, ISSN 0361-9230, E-ISSN 1873-2747, Vol. 81, no 1, 100-106 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The roles of histaminergic and cholinergic neuron systems in the regulation of body temperature have been studied almost exclusively in animals. Recently, we have found that motion sickness, i.e. a condition where hippocampal cholinergic mismatch signals induce a release of histamine in the vomiting centre, accelerates the decline in body temperature in men during exposure to cold. In the present study we measured the thermoregulatory effects of two substances commonly used against motion sickness, i.e. the histamine (H1) receptor blocker dimenhydrinate (DMH) and the muscarine receptor blocker scopolamine (SCOP). In three trials, control (CN), DMH and SCOP, 10 male subjects were immersed in 15 degrees C water for a maximum of 90 min. The trials were separated by a minimum of three days and their order was alternated between subjects. In all trials the subject received, in a double blind fashion, a transdermal patch (SCOP or placebo) 12-14 h before immersion and a tablet (DMH or placebo) 1 h before immersion. Mean skin temperature, rectal temperature (T-rec), the difference in temperature between the non-immersed right forearm and 3rd finger of the right hand (T-ff), and oxygen uptake (VO2) were recorded. The fall in T-rec was smaller in the DMH than in the CN and SCOP conditions. The recordings of T-ff and VO2 suggest that SCOP attenuates peripheral vasoconstriction while DMH increases shivering thermogenesis. Notably, thermal discomfort was reduced in the SCOP condition. Findings are thoroughly discussed in the context of animal studies on the neuropharmacology and neurophysiology of thermoregulation and motion sickness.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. Vol. 81, no 1, 100-106 p.
Keyword [en]
Hypothermia, Body temperature, Temperature regulation, Acetylcholine, Histamine, Motion illness
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-26358DOI: 10.1016/j.brainresbull.2009.06.012ISI: 000274101500016ScopusID: 2-s2.0-71549130744OAI: diva2:371996
QC 20101123Available from: 2010-11-23 Created: 2010-11-23 Last updated: 2010-11-23Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Effects of Motion Sickness on Human Thermoregulatory Mechanisms
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Effects of Motion Sickness on Human Thermoregulatory Mechanisms
2010 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The presented studies were performed to investigate the effects of motion sickness (MS) on human autonomic and behavioural thermoregulatory mechanisms during cold stress and in a thermoneutral environment. The roles of histaminergic and cholinergic neuron systems in autonomic thermoregulation and MS-dependent dysfunction of autonomic thermoregulation were studied using a histamine-receptor blocker, dimenhydrinate (DMH), and a muscarine-receptor blocker, scopolamine (Scop). In addition, the effects of these substances on MS-induced nausea and perceptual thermoregulatory responses were studied. MS was found to lower core temperature, during cold stress by attenuation of cold-induced vasoconstriction and decreased shivering thermogenesis, and in a thermoneutral environment by inducing sweating and vasodilatation. The increased core cooling during cold stress was counteracted by DMH but not by Scop. In a thermoneutral environment, the temperature was perceived as uncomfortably warm during and after the MS provocation despite decreases in both core and skin temperature. No such effect was seen during cold-water immersion. Both pharmacologic substances had per se different effects on autonomic thermoregulatory responses during cold stress. Scop decreased heat preservation, but did not affect core cooling, while DMH reduced the rate of core cooling through increased shivering thermogenesis. Both DMH and Scop per se decreased thermal discomfort during cold-water immersion.Findings support the notion of modulating roles of histamine (H) and acetylcholine (Ach) in autonomic thermoregulation and during MS. MS activates cholinergic and histaminergic pathways, thereby increasing the levels of H and Ach in several neuro-anatomical structures. As a secondary effect, MS also elevates blood levels of several neuropeptides, which in turn would influence central and/or peripheral thermoregulatory responses.In conclusion, MS may predispose to hypothermia, by impairment of autonomic thermoregulation in both cold and thermoneutral environments and by modulation of behavioural thermoregulatory input signals. This might have significant implications for survival in maritime accidents.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: KTH, 2010. v, 41 p.
Trita-STH : report, ISSN 1653-3836 ; 2010:6
Motion Sickness, autonomic thermoregulation, behavioural thermoregulation, hypothermia, acetylcholine, histamine
National Category
urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-26058 (URN)978-91-7415-795-6 (ISBN)
Public defence
2010-12-10, sal 3:221, Alfred Nobels alle 10, Huddinge, 13:30 (English)

Medicine doktorsexamen

Available from: 2010-11-23 Created: 2010-11-11 Last updated: 2013-06-05Bibliographically approved

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