Comprehensive Physiology Wiley Online Library

Thermoreceptors

Full Article on Wiley Online Library



Abstract

The sections in this article are:

1 Peripheral Thermoreceptors
1.1 Cold Receptors
1.2 Warm Receptors
2 Central Connections of Peripheral Thermoreceptors
2.1 Somatosensory Pathways
2.2 Raphe‐Hypothalamic Pathways
3 Central Thermoreceptors
3.1 Preoptic Area and Anterior Hypothalamus
3.2 Posterior Hypothalamus
3.3 Midbrain, Pons, and Medulla
3.4 Spinal Cord
3.5 Other Central Receptors—Vascular and Abdominal
3.6 Integration of Signals From Peripheral and Central Thermal Sites
3.7 Natural Variations of Central Nervous System Temperature
4 Vascular Responses to Peripheral and Central Thermal Stimulation
4.1 Animal Evidence
4.2 Human Evidence
5 Conclusions
6 Addendum
Figure 1. Figure 1.

Diagrams showing characteristics of warm and cold receptors of the skin. Left, static responses to steady temperatures; right, dynamic responses to rapid increase and decrease of temperature.

From Hensel
Figure 2. Figure 2.

Recordings from fibers supplying warm (A) and cold (B) receptors in rat scrotal skin. Note dynamic responses to temperature changes in each case and bursts of impulses at 25°C in cold fiber. Time calibrations, 1 s.

From Hellon et al.
Figure 3. Figure 3.

Response of firing rate of a neuron in rat ventrobasal thalamus to various steady levels of scrotal skin temperature. Each point is mean rate for 1 min at each temperature; vertical bars indicate ± SEM.

From Hellon and Misra
Figure 4. Figure 4.

Recording from neuron in medial preoptic area of conscious rabbit during imposed changes of local temperature. Open circles, temperature; closed circles, firing rate. Time in minutes. Note faithful inverse relation between firing rate and temperature over range 37°C‐40°C.

Figure 5. Figure 5.

Neural activity in skin sympathetic fibers and splanchnic fibers during spinal cord heating (A) and cooling (B). Data from 2 anesthetized rabbits showing vertebral canal temperature (TVC), rectal temperature (Tre), left and right ear temperatures, mean arterial pressure (Pmart), heat rate (HF), and integrated activity over 10 s from skin and splanchnic sympathetic fibers plotted as changes from prestimulation period. Bars show period of heating (open bar) and cooling (black bar) from 0 to 3 min. Note inverse changes in the 2 nerve recordings to heating and cooling.

From Walther et al
Figure 6. Figure 6.

Rapid increase and decrease in blood flow in hand caused by heating the trunk for 60 s at 2 levels of radiation. Each curve is mean of 3 experiments.

From Kerslake and Cooper


Figure 1.

Diagrams showing characteristics of warm and cold receptors of the skin. Left, static responses to steady temperatures; right, dynamic responses to rapid increase and decrease of temperature.

From Hensel


Figure 2.

Recordings from fibers supplying warm (A) and cold (B) receptors in rat scrotal skin. Note dynamic responses to temperature changes in each case and bursts of impulses at 25°C in cold fiber. Time calibrations, 1 s.

From Hellon et al.


Figure 3.

Response of firing rate of a neuron in rat ventrobasal thalamus to various steady levels of scrotal skin temperature. Each point is mean rate for 1 min at each temperature; vertical bars indicate ± SEM.

From Hellon and Misra


Figure 4.

Recording from neuron in medial preoptic area of conscious rabbit during imposed changes of local temperature. Open circles, temperature; closed circles, firing rate. Time in minutes. Note faithful inverse relation between firing rate and temperature over range 37°C‐40°C.



Figure 5.

Neural activity in skin sympathetic fibers and splanchnic fibers during spinal cord heating (A) and cooling (B). Data from 2 anesthetized rabbits showing vertebral canal temperature (TVC), rectal temperature (Tre), left and right ear temperatures, mean arterial pressure (Pmart), heat rate (HF), and integrated activity over 10 s from skin and splanchnic sympathetic fibers plotted as changes from prestimulation period. Bars show period of heating (open bar) and cooling (black bar) from 0 to 3 min. Note inverse changes in the 2 nerve recordings to heating and cooling.

From Walther et al


Figure 6.

Rapid increase and decrease in blood flow in hand caused by heating the trunk for 60 s at 2 levels of radiation. Each curve is mean of 3 experiments.

From Kerslake and Cooper
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Richard Hellon. Thermoreceptors. Compr Physiol 2011, Supplement 8: Handbook of Physiology, The Cardiovascular System, Peripheral Circulation and Organ Blood Flow: 659-673. First published in print 1983. doi: 10.1002/cphy.cp020318