Genital Sensation: CNS Targets and Functions in Females

comment on Kristal paper

Barry R. Komisaruk

Dear Mark:
Congratulations on a clear, concise, most interesting paper.  I like your concept that a function of the opioid potentiation by POEF at parturition is to inhibit subsequent pseudopregnancy and your supporting evidence in fig. 6.  I was particularly intrigued by your statement that POEF acts via gut vagal receptors, since we have evidence, reviewed in our paper in the symposium that the vagus mediates responses to vaginocervical stimulation in rats, and  evidence that the vagus mediates responses to vaginal or cervical self-stimulation in women.  Can you expand on the data on which your conclusion is based?  Also, where did you cut the vagus nerves -- is it possible that the POEF is acting at the level of the reproductive tract in addition to or rather than at the level of the gut?  Cutting the main vagus trunks at the level of the gut would also interrupt the reproductive tract afferents.
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