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Br J Pharmacol. 2000 Feb;129(4):637-44.

Beta 1-, beta 2- and atypical beta-adrenoceptor-mediated relaxation in rat isolated aorta.

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School of Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Glasgow Caledonian University, Glasgow G4 0BA.


beta-adrenoceptor-mediated relaxation was investigated in ring preparations of rat isolated thoracic aorta. Rings were pre-constricted with a sub-maximal concentration of noradrenaline (1 microM) and relaxant responses to cumulative concentrations of beta-adrenoceptor agonists obtained. The concentration-response curve (CRC) to isoprenaline was shifted to the right by propranolol (0.3 microM) with a steepening of the slope. Estimation of the magnitude of the shift from EC(50) values gave a pA(2) of 7.6. Selective beta(1)- and beta(2)-adrenoceptor antagonists, CGP 20712A (0.1 microM) and ICI 118551 (0.1 microM), respectively, produced 4 and 14 fold shifts of the isoprenaline CRC. Atypical beta-adrenoceptor agonists also produced concentration-dependent relaxation of aortic rings. The order of potency of the beta-adrenoceptor agonists was (-log EC(50)): isoprenaline (6. 25)>cyanopindolol (5.59)>isoprenaline+propranolol (5.11)>CGP 12177A (4.40)>ZD 2079 (4.24)>ZM 215001 (4.07)>BRL 37344 (3.89). Relaxation to CGP 12177A and ZM 215001 was unaffected by propranolol (0.3 microM). SR 59230A (</=1 microM) and cyanopindolol (1 microM), beta(3)-adrenoceptor antagonists, had no effect on the isoprenaline (in the presence of propranolol) or CGP 12177A CRCs. Bupranolol and CGP 20712A, at microM concentrations (beta(4)-adrenceptor antagonists), inhibited responses to isoprenaline (in the presence of propranolol) and CGP 12177A. In conclusion, atypical beta-adrenoceptors co-exist with beta(1)- and beta(2)-adrenoceptors in rat aorta. Although non-conventional partial agonists and selective beta(3)-adrenoceptor agonist cause relaxation, the vascular atypical beta-adrenoceptor does not appear to correspond to the beta(3)-adrenoceptor. There are, however, similarities with the putative beta(4)-adrenoceptor.

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