Pflügers Archiv

, Volume 321, Issue 1, pp 56–66 | Cite as

The stimulation of hypothalamic neurones by changes in ambient temperature

  • R. F. Hellon


  1. 1.

    Unit activity has been recorded from the antero-medial hypothalamic area of sedated rabbits while ambient and hypothalamic temperatures were independently varied.

  2. 2.

    Out of 202 neurones tested, 19 were found which responded in less than 1 min to rapid changes in ambient temperature of ±15° C. Thirteen neurones responded only to cooling, two only to warming and four to both warming and cooling.

  3. 3.

    For a given direction of temperature changes, some units showed an accelerated firing rate while others were slowed.

  4. 4.

    It was possible to test 8 of these cells which responded to ambient temperature changes for their sensitivity to hypothalamic temperature. Six of them were found to have this additional temperature response.

  5. 5.

    The results support recent hypotheses of temperature regulation in that they show there is a convergence of thermal information from peripheral and central receptors at the level of the anterior hypothalamus.



Hypathalamic Neurones Environmental Temperature Temperature Sensitivity Temperature Regulation 


Hypothalamische Neuronen Umgebungstemperatur Temperaturempfindlichkeit Temperaturregulation 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. F. Hellon
    • 1
  1. 1.National Institute for Medical ResearchLondonEngland

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