Site of catecholamine modulation of feto-maternal electric potential difference in the pig

B. S. Ward, J. D. Glazier, C. P. Sibley, R. D H Boyd

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Feto-maternal vascular (PD(F-M)) and amniotic-maternal (PD(A-M)) potential differences were measured simultaneously on seven occasions in six conscious pigs of 100-106 days gestation. Resting values of PD(F-M) and PD(A-M) were not significantly different although the range was wide. Fetal intravascular injection of 20 μg adrenaline, but not of saline, was associated with a prompt reversible change, of equal magnitude, in both PD(F-M) and PD(A-M). In some experiments polarity was reversed. Feto-amniotic potential difference did not change. There was no change in fetal plasma K+ and Na+ concentrations. Because of the simultaneous and equal alterations in PD(F-M) and PD(A-M) following adrenaline and the anatomical configuration of the pig conceptus, we conclude that the catecholamine modifiable component of PD(F-M) is generated by electrogenesis in the pig placenta, probably by its chorionic (trophoblastic) cell layer.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)361-370
    Number of pages9
    JournalExperimental Physiology
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - May 1998


    • Animals
    • Electrophysiology
    • pharmacology: Epinephrine
    • Female
    • metabolism: Fetal Blood
    • physiology: Fetus
    • Injections
    • Osmolar Concentration
    • blood: Potassium
    • Pregnancy
    • physiology: Pregnancy, Animal
    • blood: Sodium
    • pharmacology: Sodium Chloride
    • Swine


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