Journal of Endocrinological Investigation

, Volume 28, Issue 2, pp 998–1002 | Cite as

Nitric oxide donor-induced inhibition of pregnant rat uterine spontaneous contractile activity and release of nitric oxide from uterus measured by microdialysis

  • T. Okawa
  • K. Asano
  • H. Takahashi
  • A. Sato
  • Y. P. Vedernikov
  • G. R. Saade
  • R. E. Gafield
Original Article


Our aim was to study whether nitric oxide (NO) donor-induced inhibition of pregnant rat myometrium contractility correlates with the release of NO. Uterine rings from mid-pregnant and late pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats were used for isometric tension recording. Concentration-response relationships to sodium nitroprusside (SNP), nitroglycerine (NTG) and diethylamine (DEA)/NO were assessed. The time course of NO release after addition to the organ chambers of the 3 NO-donors was assessed by the detection of NO products NOx (NO3+NO2) using the microdialysis probe by a HPLC-NO detector system. DEA/NO induced greater inhibition of the spontaneous contractile activity of uterine rings from mid-pregnant rats than SNP or NTG. In uterine rings from late pregnant rats, however, the maximal inhibition of the contractility by all 3 NO-donors were significantly less. The NOx levels measured in the uterine ring walls from either mid-pregnant or late pregnant rats significantly increased after DEA/NO as compared to the basal levels or the levels after NTG or SNP. The decrease of NO-donor-induced inhibition of rat myometrium contractility, with unchanged formation of NOx, at term, suggests that the changes in NO signaling are responsible for gestational age-dependent attenuation of the inhibitory effect.


NOx contractility pregnancy uterus microdialysis 


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Copyright information

© Italian Society of Endocrinology (SIE) 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • T. Okawa
    • 1
  • K. Asano
    • 1
  • H. Takahashi
    • 1
  • A. Sato
    • 1
  • Y. P. Vedernikov
    • 2
  • G. R. Saade
    • 2
  • R. E. Gafield
    • 2
  1. 1.Departments of Obstetrics and GynecologyFukushima Medical University School of MedicineFukushimaJapan
  2. 2.Departments of Obstetrics and GynecologyUniversity of Texas Medical BranchGalvestonUSA

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