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J Smooth Muscle Res. 2019;55(0):23-33. doi: 10.1540/jsmr.55.23.

The protective effect of endothelin receptor antagonists against surgically induced impairment of gastrointestinal motility in rats.

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Department of Dermatology, Venerology, Allergology, Medical University of Gdańsk, Smoluchowskiego 17, 80-214, Gdańsk, Poland.
Department of Thoracic Surgery, Medical University of Gdańsk, Smoluchowskiego 17, 80-214, Gdańsk, Poland.
Department of Allergology and Pneumonology, Medical University of Gdańsk, Smoluchowskiego 17, 80-214, Gdańsk, Poland.
Department of Clinical Toxicology, Medical University of Gdańsk, Kartuska 4/6, 80-104, Gdańsk, Poland.
Department of Pharmacology, Medical University of Gdańsk, Dębowa 23, 80-204 Gdańsk, Poland.


Endothelin (ET) receptor antagonists: BQ-123 (ETA), BQ-788 (ETB), tezosentan (dual ET receptor antagonist) protect against the development of postoperative ileus (POI) evoked by ischemia-reperfusion (I/R). The current experiments explored whether ET antagonists prevent the occurrence of POI evoked by surgical gut manipulation. Intestinal transit was assessed by measuring the rate of dye migration subsequent to skin incision (SI), laparotomy (L), or laparotomy and surgical gut handling (L+M) in diethyl ether anaesthesized rats (E). Experimental animals were randomly sub-divided into two groups depending on the time of recovery following surgery: viz. either 2 or 24 h (early or late phase POI). E and SI did not affect the gastrointestinal (GI) transit. In contrast, L and L+M significantly reduced GI motility in comparison to untreated group (UN). Tezosentan (10 mg/kg), BQ-123 and BQ-788 (1 mg/kg) protected against development of L+M evoked inhibition of intestinal motility in the course of late phase, but not early phase POI. Furthermore, tezosentan alleviated the decrease in the contractile response of the longitudinal jejunal smooth muscle strips to carbachol in vitro induced by L+M. The serum ET(1-21) concentration was not increased in either the early or the late phase POI groups after surgery compared to control animals. This study indicates that delay in the intestinal transit in late phase of surgically induced POI involves an ET-dependent mechanism.


endothelins; gastrointestinal motility rats; gut manipulation; postoperative ileus

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