Attenuated Chemosensory Responsiveness of the Grueneberg Ganglion in Mouse Pups at Warm Temperatures. uri icon


  • Neurons of the Grueneberg ganglion (GG) in the anterior nasal region of mice respond to a small set of odorous compounds, including given dimethylpyrazines present in mouse urine. Consequently, mouse pups living in murine colonies are presumably commonly exposed to such GG-activating substances. Since stimulation of the GG elicits alarm and stress reactions in mice, the question arises whether such a GG activation potentially inducing stress could be reduced when pups might rather feel secure in the presence of their mother. Being together with their warmth-giving dam, mouse pups experience a nest temperature of ?35?°C. Therefore, we hypothesized that such a warm temperature may attenuate the responses of GG neurons to dimethylpyrazines. Monitoring the expression of the activity marker c-Fos, GG responses to dimethylpyrazines were significantly lower in pups exposed to these substances at 35?°C compared to exposure at 30?°C. By contrast, dimethylpyrazine-induced responses of neurons in the main olfactory epithelium were not diminished at 35?°C in comparison to 30?°C. The attenuated chemosensory responses of GG neurons at 35?°C coincided with a reduced dimethylpyrazine-evoked activation of the glomeruli in the olfactory bulb innervated by GG neurons. The reduction in dimethylpyrazine-evoked GG responses by warm temperatures was positively correlated with exposure time, suggesting that warm temperatures might enhance desensitization processes in GG neurons. In summary, the findings indicate that warm temperatures similar to those in mouse nests in the presence of the dam attenuate GG activation by colony-derived odorants.

publication date

  • December 16, 2017