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Clin Pharmacol Ther. 1995 Dec;58(6):675-83.

Neuropeptide Y in human hand veins: pharmacologic characterization and interaction with cyclic guanosine monophosphate-dependent venodilators in vivo.

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Department of Internal Medicine, University Hospital, Basel, Switzerland.


The dorsal hand vein compliance technique was used to study direct vascular effects of human neuropeptide Y in vivo. Human neuropeptide Y is an endogenous vasoconstrictor peptide that is costored with norepinephrine in sympathetic nerve endings and coreleased with the catecholamine under various physiologic and pathologic conditions. Compared with the alpha 1-adrenergic agonist phenylephrine (geometric mean dose-rate that produces the half-maximal response [ED50]: 1.05 nmol/min; maximum venoconstriction [Emax] +/- SEM, expressed as a percentage of baseline compliance: 91% +/- 3%), human neuropeptide Y was nine times more potent (geometric mean ED50: 0.122 nmol/min; p < 0.001) but markedly less efficacious (Emax: 58% +/- 4%; n = 12; p < 0.001). Venoconstrictor effects of human neuropeptide Y lasted several hours and were unchanged by simultaneous administration of alpha-adrenergic antagonists but were readily reversed by nitroglycerin or bradykinin. The high responsiveness of subcutaneous veins to human neuropeptide Y indicates that human neuropeptide Y may regulate venous compliance and filling of the venous subcutaneous capacitance bed in vivo.

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