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Am J Physiol. 1993 Feb;264(2 Pt 2):H419-22.

Nitric oxide and cGMP: mediators of pelvic nerve-stimulated erection in dogs.

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Department of Urology, University of California School of Medicine, San Francisco.


We sought to determine whether the L-arginine-nitric oxide-guanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cGMP) pathway, known to mediate neurostimulation-induced smooth muscle relaxation in penile tissue of rabbits and humans in vitro, is operative also in vivo. Adult male dogs (n = 9) were subjected to direct electrical stimulation of the pelvic nerves to induce penile tumescence. Intracavernous injection of the nitric oxide-releasing substance S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine resulted in similar tumescence. Intracavernous injection of a specific inhibitor of nitric oxide synthesis, NG-nitro-L-arginine, blocked pelvic nerve-stimulated tumescence, and this was partially reversed by intracavernous injection of the nitric oxide precursor L-arginine. Furthermore, neurostimulated tumescence was inhibited by methylene blue, an inhibitor of cytosolic guanylate cyclase and enhanced by M&B 22948, a cGMP phosphodiesterase inhibitor. These in vivo findings support the hypothesis that cavernous smooth muscle relaxation and penile tumescence are mediated by nitric oxide and cGMP.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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