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Science. 1985 Sep 27;229(4720):1407-8.

Deficient vasoactive intestinal peptide innervation in the sweat glands of cystic fibrosis patients.


The innervation of acini and ducts of eccrine sweat glands by immunoreactive, vasoactive intestinal peptide-containing nerve fibers was sharply reduced in seven patients with cystic fibrosis compared to eight normal subjects. The decrease in innervation by this neuropeptide, which has been shown to promote blood flow and the movement of water and chloride across epithelial surfaces in other systems, may be a basic mechanism for the decreased water content and relative impermeability of the epithelium to chloride and other ions that characterize cystic fibrosis.

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