Temperature sensitivity of tone in the rabbit facial vein: myogenic mechanism for cranial thermoregulation

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Science  29 Feb 1980:
Vol. 207, Issue 4434, pp. 1001-1002
DOI: 10.1126/science.7352293


Intrinsic myogenic tone in the buccal segment of the rabbit facial vein is exquisitely sensitive to small changes in temperature in the range 33 degrees to 44 degrees C. This particular venous segment also exhibits a preponderance of beta-adrenergic receptors and receives a dense, medial sympathetic innervation. This area of the vein is proposed to act as a temperature-sensitive sphincter that distributes cooled nasal venous blood between superficial and deep venous drainage systems in the head and neck. Deviation of cool blood to deeper venous sinuses has been shown to be an important thermoregulatory mechanism.