1. The mechanisms underlying vasodilator effect of nicotine on mesenteric resistance blood vessels and the role of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP)-containing (CGRPergic) vasodilator nerves were studied in the rat. 2. Mesenteric vascular beds isolated from Wistar rats were perfused with Krebs solution, and perfusion pressure was measured with a pressure transducer. 3. In preparations with intact endothelium and contracted by perfusion with Krebs solution containing methoxamine, perfusion of nicotine (1-100 μM) for 1 min caused a concentration-dependent vasodilator response without vasoconstriction. 4. The nicotine-induced vasodilation was markedly inhibited by hexamethonium (nicotinic cholinoceptor antagonist, 10 μM) and blocked by guanethidine (adrenergic neuron blocker, 5 μM). 5. Either denervation by cold storage (4°C for 72 h) or adrenergic denervation by 6-hydroxydopamine (toxin for adrenergic neurons, 2 mM for 20 min incubation, twice) blocked the nicotine-induced vasodilation. 6. Neither endothelium removal with perfusion of sodium deoxycholate (1.80 mg ml-1, for 30 s) nor treatment with N(ω)-nitro-L-arginine (nitric oxide synthase inhibitor, 100 μM), atropine (muscarinic cholinoceptor antagonist, 10 nM) or propranolol (β-adrenoceptor antagonist, 100 nM) affected the nicotine-induced vasodilation. 7. In preparations without endothelium, treatment with capsaicin (depleting CGRP-containing sensory nerves, 1 μM) or human CGRP[8-37] (CGRP receptor antagonist, 0.5 μM) markedly inhibited the nicotine-induced vasodilation. 8. These results suggest that, in the mesenteric resistance artery of the rat, nicotine induces vasodilation. which is independent of the function of the endothelium and is involved in activation of CGRPergic nerves. It is also suggested that nicotine stimulates presynaptic nicotinic cholinoceptors on adrenergic nerves to release adrenergic neurotransmitters, which then act on CGRPergic nerves to release endogenous CGRP from the nerve.
- Adrenergic-dependent vasodilation
- Calcitonin gene-related peptide
- Nicotinic cholinoceptor
- Rat mesenteric resistance artery
ASJC Scopus subject areas