The effects of inorganic lead on neuromuscular function were examined using the rat and mouse phrenic nerve-hemidiaphragm preparations. In vitro lead was found to decrease the force of contraction and to increase the latency between nerve stimulation and contraction. These effects were not seen when the muscle was stimulated directly. Responses of lead-treated preparations to acetylcholine and acetyl-β-methylcholine were unchanged. In addition, neuromuscular function was impaired in mice chronically exposed to lead. The results support the hypothesis of a prejunctional site of action of inorganic lead.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience