Orexin, a neuropeptide derived from the perifornical area of the hypothalamus (PeFLH), promotes the recovery of propofol, isoflurane, and sevoflurane anesthesias, without influencing the induction time. However, whether the orexinergic system also plays a similar role in desflurane anesthesia, which is widely applied in clinical practice owing to its most rapid onset and offset time among all volatile anesthetics, has not yet been studied. In the present study, we explored the effect of the orexinergic system on the consciousness state induced by desflurane anesthesia.
The c-Fos staining was used to observe the activity changes of orexinergic neurons in the PeFLH and their efferent projection regions under desflurane anesthesia. Chemogenetic and optogenetic techniques were applied to compare the effect of PeFLH orexinergic neurons on the induction, emergence, and maintenance states between desflurane and isoflurane anesthesias. Orexinergic terminals in the paraventricular thalamic nucleus (PVT) were manipulated with pharmacologic, chemogenetic, and optogenetic techniques to assess the effect of orexinergic circuitry on desflurane anesthesia.
Desflurane anesthesia inhibited the activity of orexinergic neurons in the PeFLH, as well as the neuronal activity in PVT, basal forebrain, dorsal raphe nucleus, and ventral tegmental area, as demonstrated by c-Fos staining. Activation of PeFLH orexinergic neurons prolonged the induction time and accelerated emergence from desflurane anesthesia but only influenced the emergence in isoflurane anesthesia, as demonstrated by chemogenetic and pharmacologic techniques. Meanwhile, optical activation of orexinergic neurons exhibited a long-lasting inhibitory effect on burst-suppression ratio (BSR) under desflurane anesthesia, and the effect may be contributed by the orexinergic PeFLH-PVT circuitry. The orexin-2 receptor (OX2R), but not orexin-1 receptor (OX1R), in the PVT, which had been inhibited most significantly by desflurane, mediated the proemergence effect of desflurane anesthesia.
We discovered, for the first time, that orexinergic neurons in the PeFLH could not only influence the maintenance and emergence from isoflurane and desflurane anesthesias but also affect the induction under desflurane anesthesia. Furthermore, this specific effect is probably mediated by orexinergic PeFLH-PVT circuitry, especially OX2Rs in the PVT.