A reduction in body temperature can be achieved by a downward adjustment of the termoneutral zone, a process also described as anapyrexia. Pharmacological induction of anapyrexia could enable numerous applications in medicine. However, little is known about the potential of pharmacological agents to induce anapyrexic signaling. Therefore, a review of literature was performed and over a thousand pharmacologically active compounds were analyzed for their ability to induce anapyrexia in animals. Based on this analysis, eight agents (helium, dimethyl sulfoxide, reserpine, (oxo)tremorine, pentobarbital, (chlor) promazine, insulin, and acetaminophen) were identified as potential anapyrexia-inducing compounds and discussed in detail. The translational pitfalls were also addressed for each candidate compound. Of the agents that were discussed, reserpine, (oxo)tremorine, and (chlor) promazine may possess true anapyrexic properties based on their ability to either affect the thermoneutral zone or its effectors and facilitate hypothermic signaling. However, these properties are currently not unequivocal and warrant further examination in the context of artificially-induced hypometabolism.
1 Department of Experimental Surgery, Academic Medical Center, University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, the Netherlands
2 Current affiliation: Philips Research, Eindhoven, the Netherlands
Marcel C. Dirkes
Philips Research, High Tech Campus 34, 5656 AE Eindhoven, the Netherlands
Tel: +31 65 2614646
Department of Biomedical and NeuroMotor Sciences, University of Bologna, Bologna, Italy