Blockade of endotoxin-induced cecal hypoperfusion and ileus with an alpha 2 antagonist in horses. Academic Article uri icon


  • Stimulation of alpha 2 adrenergic receptors inhibits colonic motility and may constrict some peripheral vascular beds. Endotoxemia elicits release of sympathetic neurotransmitters and increases sympathetic nerve activity, which may result in stimulation of alpha 2 adrenergic receptors. The objective of this study was to determine whether blockade of alpha 2 adrenergic receptors would restore cecal motility and blood flow during endotoxemia in horses. Strain-gauge force transducers and ultrasonic flow probes were used to measure cecal and colonic mechanical activity and lateral cecal arterial blood flow. Intravenous infusion of endotoxin (cumulative dose of 0.03 mg/kg) significantly decreased cecal and right ventral colon contractile activity and lateral cecal arterial blood flow. Slow IV infusion of yohimbine (cumulative dose of 75 micrograms/kg) significantly attenuated those effects of endotoxin. On the basis of our findings, we concluded that endotoxemia causes cecal and proximal colonic ileus and cecal hypoperfusion via a mechanism that involves alpha 2 adrenergic receptors.

published proceedings

  • Am J Vet Res

author list (cited authors)

  • Eades, S. C., & Moore, J. N.

citation count

  • 44

complete list of authors

  • Eades, SC||Moore, JN

publication date

  • April 1993