This study examined the electrophysiological responses to antigen and to various stimuli in jejunal mucosa from rats sensitized to egg albumin with alum and pertussis adjuvants. Luminal antigen caused an immediate increase in short-circuit current, a measure of net ion transport, which was one of three different patterns. All were inhibited by the chloride channel blocker diphenyl-2-carboxylate, by chloride-free buffer, and by doxantrazole, a mast cell stabilizer. Depending on the pattern, the histamine-1 antagonist diphenhydramine, the 5-hydroxytryptamine-2 antagonist ketanserin, and the cyclooxygenase inhibitor piroxicam also reduced the responses. A neural component was indicated by inhibition of the responses to luminal antigen by the neurotoxin tetrodotoxin and by neonatal capsaicin treatment, which depletes substance P-containing nerves. In the absence of antigen, histamine and substance P caused increases in short-circuit current; the magnitude of these changes was significantly greater in tissues from sensitized animals than in controls. These data suggest that sensitization itself may result in hypersecretory responses to some inflammatory mediator and neurotransmitter substances.