Aspects on the Role of Tachykinins and Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide in Control of Secretion, Motility and Blood Flow in the Gut
Both intrinsic and extrinsic neurons of the gut respond to mechanical and chemical stimuli by the release of neurotransmitters. We summarize here some of our recent work on the role of vasoactive intestinal polypeptide (VIP), substance P (SP) and neurokinin A (NKA) in the secretory, motor and vascular effects of hydrochloric acid stimulation in the isolated rat duodenal loop and electrical nerve stimulation and mechanical stimulation of the cat colon. Isolated duodenal loops of conscious rats were perfused with isotonic saline, and challenged at hourly intervals with brief exposures to increasing concentrations of HCL. The concentrations of bicarbonate and prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) released from the duodenal mucosa were significantly augmented already by pH 5.0 whereas VIP was significantly augmented at pH 3.0 and the tachykinins SP and NKA at pH 2.0. Continuous electric stimulation of the pelvic nerve in cats at 4 Hz during 1 s with 10 s rest produced a marked release of NKA-LI and SP-LI from the colon to blood. Reflex activation of the pelvic nervae by mechanical stimulation of the anus or rectal distension produced a less pronounced release of NKA-LI and SP-LI from the colon to blood. There was a simultaneous colonic contraction and vasodilation during each nerve stimulation. Close intraarterial infusions of NKA, neurokinin B, SP, neuropeptide K (NPK), eledoisin and physalemin at doses of 0.1–100 pmol/min induced dosedependent proximal and distal colonic contractions and vasodilation, NKA being the most potent. The effects of the tachykinins were reduced after tetrodotoxin and atropine, but unchanged after treatment with hexamethonium. Taken together, the present findings indicate that peptides present in primary afferents including VIP, SP, and NKA are involved in physiological regulatory mechanisms including smooth muscle contraction, bicarbonate secretion and vasodilation in the gut.
KeywordsHigh Performance Liquid Chromatography Vasoactive Intestinal Polypeptide Pelvic Nerve Rectal Distension Bicarbonate Secretion
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