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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Evidence for an adrenergic mechanism in the control of body asymmetry.

The effect of phenylephrine, an alpha-1 adrenergic agonist, on development of body asymmetry was studied using a rat whole embryo culture system. Embryos were explanted at the presomite stage, cultured in 100% rat serum containing various concentrations of phenylephrine, and examined at the 20-25 somite stage for sidedness of asymmetric body structures, namely, bulboventricular loop, allantoic placenta, and tail. Phenylephrine treatment resulted in a dose-dependent increase of situs inversus with a maximum incidence of 52%. Coadministration of prazosin, an alpha-1 adrenergic antagonist, almost completely prevented this effect. Our results suggest that receptor-mediated stimulation of the alpha-1 adrenergic pathway is involved in the control of normal body asymmetry in developing rat embryos.[1]


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