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Circ Res. 1983 Oct;53(4):535-8.

Vasoactive intestinal peptide inhibitory innervation in bovine mesenteric lymphatics. A histochemical and pharmacological study.


The localization of vasoactive intestinal peptide-immunoreactive nerves innervating bovine lymphatic vessels was studied by an immunohistochemical technique. Nerve fibers containing vasoactive intestinal peptide immunoreactivity were present in the smooth muscle layers as well as in the adventitia of all mesenteric lymphatics that were examined. The effect of vasoactive intestinal peptide on isolated lymphatic vessels in vitro was studied. Vasoactive intestinal peptide caused a concentration-dependent relaxation of bradykinin-induced contractions of lymphatic vessels. The threshold and maximum relaxations were achieved with vasoactive intestinal peptide at concentrations less than 6 X 10(-9) M and 3 X 10(-7) M, respectively. The relaxant response to vasoactive intestinal peptide was not modified by atropine, propranolol, bretylium, or tetrodotoxin. These results suggest that vasoactive intestinal peptide may be a possible inhibitory neurotransmitter that causes relaxation of lymphatic vessels.

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