The Effect of Ethyl Alcohol on Non‐Gustatory Receptors of the Tongue of the Cat

Göran Hellekant

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Hellekant, G. The effect of ethyl alcohol on non‐gustatory receptors of the tongue of the cat. Acta physiol. scand. 1965. 65. 243–250. — Recordings were made of the response in the trigeminal part of the lingual nerve of the cat to the application on the tongue of alcohol, gustatory, thermal and mechanical stimuli. The summated response to alcohol revealed a slowly increasing dischargc after a latency of a few sec. The magnitude of the response increased with increasing alcohol concentrations and attained a maximum at 4 to 5 M alcohol then decreased at higher concentrations. The response of single lingual nerve fibres was also recorded. None of the fibres investigated responded to NaCl, acetic acid or quinine. All fibres responding to alcohol responded also to cooling and mechanical stimulation. The threshold alcohol concentration in the majority of these fibres was about 2.5 M. These fibres displayed a very regular discharge which reached an average maximum frequency of 38 imp/sec at 4.1 M alcohol. A reversible paralysis of the receptors was usually observed at alcohol concentrations of 4.1 M or higher. The conduction velocities of these fibres ranged from 5.7 to 18.0 m/sec. Alcohol did not stimulate myelinated mechanoceptive fibres which responded selectively to light or deep pressure on the tongue (specific mechanoceptive fibres) nor did alcohol stimulate myelinated fibres which only responded to high threshold mechanical or thermal stimulation (specific nociceptive fibres).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)243-250
Number of pages8
JournalActa Physiologica Scandinavica
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 1965


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