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Am J Physiol. 1991 Mar;260(3 Pt 1):G385-9.

Nitric oxide mediating NANC inhibition in opossum lower esophageal sphincter.

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Department of Surgical Gastroenterology L, Aarhus Kommunehospital, Denmark.


Strips from opossum lower esophageal sphincter were prepared and mounted in organ baths for recording of isometric tension. Nonadrenergic, non-cholinergic (NANC) inhibitory responses were evoked by transmural field stimulation. The relaxant responses to field stimulation were inhibited in a concentration-dependent manner by N omega-nitro-L-arginine (L-NNA), a substance known to inhibit the formation of nitric oxide (NO). At a concentration at 10(-4) M of L-NNA, most preparations contracted during field stimulation, and this response was abolished by atropine (10(-6) M). L-Arginine (10(-5) M) shifted the concentration-response curve for L-NNA to the right. Relaxant responses to VIP (10(-9) to 10(-6)M) and sodium nitroprusside (10(-9) to 10(-5) M) were unaffected by preincubation with L-NNA (10(-5) to 10(-4) M) or L-arginine (10(-5) M). The inhibition of NANC-relaxation was apparently not due to an influence on release of a NANC transmitter different from NO, since L-NNA had no preserving effects on responses to field stimulation in preparations treated with scorpion venom. We conclude that involvement of a NO-generating process from L-arginine seems mandatory for NANC responses in the isolated lower esophageal sphincter.

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