We have recently shown that microinjection of substance P (SP) into the nucleus raphe obscurus (NRO) of the rat decreases intragastric pressure, whereas microinjection of serotonin (5-HT) increases it. The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether there exists a functional interaction between SP and 5-HT in the NRO of the rat in their effects on gastric motor function. This was accomplished by microinjection of SP (135 pmol) and 5-HT (0.6 and 6 nmol) into the NRO in a rapid, sequential order in α-chloralose-anesthetized rats, while monitoring intragastric pressure and pyloric and greater curvature motilities. Substance P evoked significant decreases in intragastric pressure when microinjected into the NRO after vehicle and after 5-HT (at both 0.6 and 6 nmol). There was no difference in the magnitude of the SP effect after 5-HT when compared to the response after vehicle. Serotonin at a dose of 6 nmol, but not at a dose of 0.6 nmol, elicited significant increases in intragastric pressure when microinjected after vehicle or after SP, and there was no difference between the responses to 5-HT with respect to the initial treatment. We conclude that SP and 5-HT act independently in the NRO of the rat to affect intragastric pressure. © 1995.
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