Oxygen Tension Sensors in Vascular Smooth Muscle*

  • R. F. Coburn
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 78)


It is well documented in the literature that mechanical tension in at least some vascular smooth muscle preparations is sensitive to organ bath oxygen tension (1–4). Figure 1 illustrates the O2sensitivity of in vitrostrips of rabbit aorta as studied by Detar and Bohr (2), who have contributed to the characterization of this phenomenon. PO2dependent mechanical tension cannot be demonstrated in vascular smooth muscle which does not have spontaneous tension without adding an agonist to produce active tension. Most investigators have studied this phenomenon in arterial strips contracted with catecholamines. Identical PO2dependent mechanical tension, however, can be demonstrated in rabbit aorta with norepinephrine and with angiotensin contractions (5), suggesting that oxygen sensitivity is not due to effects of oxygen on release, uptake or metabolism of catecholamines.


Vascular Smooth Muscle Oxygen Uptake Active Tension Organ Bath Rabbit Aorta 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. F. Coburn
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physiology, School of MedicineUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

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