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Origin and distribution of VIP (Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide)-nerves in the genito-urinary tract

Summary

VIP (Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide)-immunoreactive nerves were found throughout the genito-urinary tract of the cat; they were less numerous in the guinea pig and in the rat. In the cat, VIP nerves were particularly numerous in the neck of the urinary bladder and proximal urethra, in the uterine cervix and in the prostate gland. The nerves were found in smooth muscle, around blood vessels and in the connective tissue immediately beneath the epithelium. Ganglia were found below the trigonum area of the bladder, in the wall of the proximal urethra, and in paracervical tissue. VIP-immunoreactive nerve cell bodies occurred in all these ganglionic formations. These ganglia probably represent the origin of the VIP nerves of the genital tract since their removal in the female cat greatly reduced the VIP nerve supply. Transection of the hypogastric nerves had no overt effect. Transection of the cervix eliminated the VIP nerves above the level of the lesion, except those in the ovaries, supporting the view that the VIP nerves of the uterus and the oviduct are derived from a paracervical source.

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Correspondence to Dr. F. Sundler.

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Alm, P., Alumets, J., Håkanson, R. et al. Origin and distribution of VIP (Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide)-nerves in the genito-urinary tract. Cell Tissue Res. 205, 337–347 (1980). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00232276

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Key words

  • VIP-immunoreactive nerves
  • Genito-urinary tract
  • Peptidergic nerves
  • Neuropeptides