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Catecholamines and the Sympathoadrenal System: The Regulation of Metabolism

  • James B. Young
  • Lewis Landsberg

Abstract

Initial recognition of a critical role for the sympathoadrenal system in metabolic regulation can be attributed, in large measure, to the work of W. B. Cannon and his colleagues more than half a centrury ago. In his classic monograph, The Wisdom of the Body,1 Cannon clearly articulated the view, based on his own experimental observations, that the sympathoadrenal system acts to defend internal homeostasis (Cannon’s own term) in a constantly changing environment. The “flight-or-fight” doctrine derived from Cannon’s general theory of sympathoadrenal function has since become one of the central tenets of modern physiology. In recent years, heightened interest in the contribution of the sympathoadrenal system to metabolic regulation has resulted from improved techniques for the in vivo assessment of sympathoadrenal activity and from increased appreciation of the potential effects of catecholamines derived from in vitro studies. Consequently, a large and complex literature has developed over the past decade; this chapter will attempt to review the relevant literature and to provide perspective on the contribution of the sympathoadrenal system to metabolic regulation.

Keywords

Sympathetic Nerve Sympathetic Activity Cold Exposure Adrenal Medulla Sodium Reabsorption 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • James B. Young
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lewis Landsberg
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of MedicineHarvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  2. 2.Department of MedicineBeth Israel HospitalBostonUSA

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