Localization of muscarinic receptor subtypes in brain stem areas regulating sleep

Helen A. Baghdoyan, Vasiliki J. Mallios, Robert B. Duckrow, Deborah C. Mash

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


Muscarinic cholinergic receptors (mAChRs) within the pontine brain stem play a key role in generating rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. Using an in vitro autoradiographic technique that permits selective labeling of mAChR subtypes by radioligand binding, this study provides the first quantitative map of mAChR subtypes in cat brain stem areas important for REM sleep generation. M1, M2 and M3 mAChR subtypes were distributed heterogeneously throughout the brain stem. For all 3 mAChR subtypes, the greatest levels of binding were found in the dorsal raphe and locus coeruleus, and the least amount of binding was in the reticular formation. These findings are consistent with data from in vivo studies showing that multiple mAChR subtypes are involved in REM sleep generation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1631-1634
Number of pages4
Issue number13
StatePublished - Aug 1994


  • Dorsal raphe
  • Gigantocellular tegmental field
  • Laterodorsal tegmental nucleus
  • Locus coeruleus
  • Pedunculopontine tegmental nucleus
  • Quantitative autoradiography
  • Rapid eye movement (REM) sleep
  • Reticular formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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