Prenatal nicotine alters vigilance states and AchR gene expression in the neonatal rat: Implications for SIDS

Marcos G. Frank, Hilary Srere, Carlos Ledezma, Bruce O'Hara, H. Craig Heller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations

Abstract

Maternal smoking is a major risk factor for sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The mechanisms by which cigarette smoke predisposes infants to SIDS are not known. We examined the effects of prenatal nicotine exposure on sleep/wake ontogenesis and central cholinergic receptor gene expression in the neonatal rat. Prenatal nicotine exposure transiently increased sleep continuity and accelerated sleep/wake ontogeny in the neonatal rat. Prenatal nicotine also upregulated nicotinic and muscarinic cholinergic receptor mRNAs in brain regions involved in regulating vigilance states. These findings suggest that the nicotine contained in cigarette smoke may predispose human infants to SIDS by interfering with the normal maturation of sleep and wake.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)R1134-R1140
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Regulatory Integrative and Comparative Physiology
Volume280
Issue number4 49-4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2001

Keywords

  • Cholinergic receptors
  • Sleep
  • Smoking
  • Sudden infant death syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine

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