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Br J Pharmacol. 1993 Dec;110(4):1572-8.

5-HT4 receptor mediated facilitation of the emptying phase of the peristaltic reflex in the guinea-pig isolated ileum.

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  • 1Postgraduate Studies in Pharmacology, School of Pharmacy, University of Bradford.


1. The influence of 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT) receptor agonists and antagonists on the emptying phase (circular muscle contraction) of the peristaltic reflex was investigated in the guinea-pig isolated ileum. 2. The effect of drug application to the serosal surface was measured as the changes in threshold pressure required to trigger the peristaltic reflex and the interval between the peristaltic strokes. A facilitation or inhibition of peristalsis was defined as a reduction or increase in threshold pressure respectively. 3. Peristalsis was not modified by the inclusion of methysergide (1 microM) and/or ondansetron (2 microM) in the bathing medium. 5-HT (0.1-1.0 microM) caused a facilitation of the peristaltic reflex; the response curve to 5-HT was not altered by the presence of methysergide (1 microM) and ondansetron (2 microM). 4. In the presence of methysergide (1 microM) plus ondansetron (2 microM), 5-HT (7.36 +/- 0.06), 5-methoxytryptamine (7.01 +/- 0.17), 5-carboxamidotryptamine (5.43 +/- 0.06), renzapride (6.09 +/- 0.17), (S)-zacopride (5.99 +/- 0.11), (R)-zacopride (5.61 +/- 0.13) and metoclopramide (4.8 +/- 0.65) caused a concentration-related facilitation of the peristaltic reflex, the pEC50 values (mean +/- s.e.mean) being shown in parentheses. 2-Methyl-5-HT was ineffective up to 10 microM. 5. The administration of SDZ 205-557 (1 microM) alone failed to modify the peristaltic reflex, but caused a parallel dextral shift in the concentration-effect curve to 5-HT (apparent pKB 7.38 +/- 0.30). It failed to modify the effect of acetylcholine to enhance the peristaltic reflex. 6. It is concluded that the rank order of potency of the 5-HT agonists from the indole and substituted benzamide series to facilitate the emptying phase of the peristaltic reflex in the guinea-pig ileum closely correlates with their published actions as 5-HT4 agonists in other systems. An agonist action on the 5-HT4 receptor is also supported by the potency of the 5-HT3/5-HT4 antagonist SDZ 205-557 (but not the 5-HT3 antagonist ondansetron) to inhibit the effects of 5-HT.

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