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Br J Pharmacol. 2001 Mar;132(5):1071-83.

Comparative effects of frovatriptan and sumatriptan on coronary and internal carotid vascular haemodynamics in conscious dogs.

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Département de Pharmacologie, Faculté de Médecine Paris Sud and INSERM E 00.01, 63 rue Gabriel Péri, 94276 Le Kremlin Bicêtre Cedex, France.


The effects of frovatriptan and sumatriptan on internal carotid and coronary vascular haemodynamics were investigated and compared in conscious dogs. Frovatriptan and sumatriptan (0.1 - 100 microg kg(-1)) induced a transient increase in external coronary artery diameter (eCOD) of up to 2.9+/-1.2 and 1.8+/-0.6%, respectively (both P:<0.05). This was followed by a prolonged and dose-dependent decrease in eCOD of up to -5.2+/-1.2 and -5.3+/-0.9% (both P:<0.05), with ED(50) values of 86+/-21 and 489+/-113 micromol kg(-1), respectively. In contrast, only a decrease in the external diameter of the internal carotid artery was observed (-6.0+/-0.6 and -6.2+/-1.4%, both P:<0.05, and ED(50) values of 86+/-41 and 493+/-162 micromol kg(-1), respectively). Frovatriptan was thus 5.7 fold more potent than sumatriptan at the level of both large coronary and internal carotid arteries. After endothelium removal by balloon angioplasty in coronary arteries, the initial dilatation induced by the triptans was abolished and delayed constriction enhanced. The selective antagonist for the 5-HT(1B) receptors SB224289 dose-dependently blocked the effects of sumatriptan on large coronary and internal carotid arteries whereas the selective antagonist for the 5-HT(1D) receptors BRL15572 did not affect any of these effects. In conclusion, frovatriptan and sumatriptan initially dilate and subsequently constrict large coronary arteries in the conscious dog, whereas they directly constrict the internal carotid artery. The vascular endothelium modulates the effects of these triptans on large coronary arteries. Finally, 5-HT(1B) but not 5-HT(1D) receptors are primarily involved in canine coronary and internal carotid vasomotor responses to sumatriptan.

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