The effects of arginine vasotocin (AVT) were examined in isolated gar arteries (afferent branchial, ABA; conus arteriosus, CA; ventral aorta, VA) and veins (hepatic, HV; intestinal; ovarian). AVT (10-11-10-7 M) had no effect in CA, produced contraction in ABA and VA and stimulated relaxation in veins. In precontracted HV, AVT relaxation was dose-dependent, long-lived (>30 min) and reduced total tension by 49.0 ± 10.7%. EC50s for AVT, arginine vasopressin, oxytocin, desmopressin, and isotocin in gar HV were 1.4 ± 0.3, 3.6 ± 0.2, 5.3 ± 1.7, 11.0 ± 6.5, and 19.0 ± 0.4 nM, respectively. AVT was more potent compared with isotocin. Strength of relaxation (percentage decrease in total tension) of AVT and structural analogs was similar (range = 32.5 to 55%). Endothelium removal did not alter percentage relaxation or sensitivity to AVT in HV. AVT relaxation was not inhibited by nitric oxide synthase inhibitors or propranolol or reversed by addition of methylene blue but it was significantly enhanced by indomethacin (10-5 M). Arginine vasopressin-receptor antagonists (V1- or V2-type selectivity; 10-6 M) were equally effective inhibitors, each blocked 99% of AVT relaxation. Forskolin (10-6 M) and papaverine (10-4 M) relaxed precontracted gar arteries and veins. The adenylyl cyclase inhibitors SQ 22536 and MDL 12,330A (10-5 M) produced transient contraction and stable relaxation, respectively, but did not inhibit AVT-induced relaxation in HV. Atrial natriuretic peptide (3 x 10-8 M) and sodium nitroprusside (10-4 M) had no effect in precontracted HV. AVT acts directly on gar venous smooth muscle cells via a nonclassical AVP receptor, possibly by increasing [cAMP]. AVT is a potent vasoconstrictor in vertebrate vasculature but produces a novel relaxation in gar veins.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology