The role of M2 muscarinic receptor subtypes mediating contraction of the circular and longitudinal smooth muscle of the pig proximal urethra

Tomonori Yamanishi*, Christopher R. Chapple, Kosaku Yasuda, Ken Ichiro Yoshida, Russell Chess-Williams

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

31 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: We investigated the characterization of muscarinic receptor subtypes in the female pig urethra. Materials and Methods: The affinities of muscarinic antagonists against carbachol responses were calculated in normal and cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) elevated tissues (contraction with KCl and relaxation with isoprenaline) using longitudinal and transverse strips of urethra. Results: In displacement experiments with 1-quinuclidinyl [phenyl-4-3H] benzilate inhibitory constant (pKi) values of 4-diphenylacetoxyl-N-methyl-piperidine methiodide (DAMP) M3 selective antagonist) and methoctramine (M2 antagonist) indicated the presence of the M2 receptor. In functional studies contraction responses to carbachol were greater in longitudinal than in circular muscle. After cAMP elevation the contraction response increased in circular muscles to the level close to that of longitudinal muscles but did not change significantly in cAMP elevated longitudinal muscle. On normal circular tissues 4-DAMP had high mean affinity (mean apparent pKB value 9.3) but with a Schild slope of less than unity (0.76). Methoctramine competitively antagonized carbachol responses (mean affinity [pA2] value 6.9). On normal longitudinal tissues 4-DAMP and methoctramine competitively antagonized carbachol responses (mean pA2 9.0 and 6.2, respectively). After cAMP elevation in circular tissues mean pA2 values for 4-DAMP (8.7) were significantly lower (p = 0.0015), and those for methoctramine (7.3) were significantly higher (p = 0.0193) than in normal tissues. In longitudinal tissues the mean pA2 value for methoctramine (6.9) was significantly greater than in normal tissues (p <0.0001) but the value for 4-DAMP (8.8) did not alter. Conclusions: Pig urethra appears to have predominantly M2 muscarinic receptors. Contraction of the normal urethra appears to be predominantly mediated by M2 and M3 receptors in circular muscle but by M3 receptors in longitudinal muscle. After cAMP elevation a contribution to contraction of M2 receptors appeared to be demonstrated in the 2 tissues but the involvement of M2 receptors appeared greater in circular muscle.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)308-314
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Urology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


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