Letter | Published:

Effect of Excess Magnesium on Vagal Inhibition and Acetylcholine Sensitivity of the Mammalian Heart in situ and in vitro

Naturevolume 217pages679680 (1968) | Download Citation



IT is known that an excess of magnesium ions blocks synaptic transmission through the ganglia of the sympathetic nervous system of mammals1,2. It is also accepted that peripheral parasympathetic pathways contain relay synapses at or near the target organ. The pharmacological properties of the junction between pre and post-ganglionic neurones in the parasympathetic system are believed to be similar to those in the ganglia of the orthosympathetic system. Stanbury2, however, failed to observe blockade of the inhibitory effect of the vagus in cats treated with sufficient magnesium to block transmission in orthosympathetic ganglia.

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  1. 1

    Hutter, C. F., and Kostial, K., J. Physiol., 124, 234 (1954).

  2. 2

    Stanbury, J. B., J. Pharmacol., 93, 52 (1948).

  3. 3

    Somjen, G., Hilmy, M., and Stephen, C. R., J. Pharmacol., 154, 652 (1966).

  4. 4

    Toda, N., and West, T. C., Amer. J. Physiol., 212, 424 (1967).

  5. 5

    Hilmy, M. I., and Somjen, G. G., Amer. J. Phiysiol. (in the press).

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  1. Department of Physiology and Pharmacology, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina

    • G. G. SOMJEN
    •  & E. N. BASKERVILLE


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