CNS pathways mediating cardiovascular regulation of vasopressin

Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol. 1996 Feb;23(2):157-60. doi: 10.1111/j.1440-1681.1996.tb02589.x.


1. The release of vasopressin from the neurohypophysial terminals of hypothalamic magnocellular neurosecretory neurons is subject to regulation by peripheral baroreceptors, cardiopulmonary volume receptors and circulating angiotensin II. Information from these sources is transmitted through different pathways to achieve different influences on the excitability of the vasopressin-secreting cells. 2. A brief increase in arterial pressure, sufficient to activate baroreceptors, is associated with a transient and selective GABAergic inhibition of these neurosecretory neurons, achieved through a multisynaptic pathway that involves ascending catecholaminergic fibres and neurons in the diagonal band of Broca. A decrease in arterial pressure activates peripheral low volume receptors and initiating neural inputs that result in an increase in the excitability of vasopressin-secreting neurons, achieved via pathways that include direct projections from caudal ventrolateral medulla A1 neurons. 3. Hypotension also releases renal renin and leads to the formation of angiotensin II; binding of this hormone to AT1 receptors on subfornical organ neurons promotes activation of a central angiotensinergic input that evokes a predominantly excitatory effect on vasopressin neurons.

MeSH terms

  • Angiotensin II / physiology
  • Blood Pressure / physiology
  • Cardiovascular Physiological Phenomena
  • Hypotension / physiopathology
  • Hypothalamus / physiology*
  • Neurosecretory Systems / physiology*
  • Pressoreceptors / physiology*
  • Shock / physiopathology
  • Subfornical Organ / physiology
  • Vasopressins / metabolism
  • Vasopressins / physiology*


  • Vasopressins
  • Angiotensin II