The relaxation produced by several H2-receptor agonists and forskolin was investigated on strips of guinea-pig lung parenchyma. Dimparit, 1 microM to 10 mM, 4-methyl histamine, 0.5 microM to 100 microM and impromidine, 10 nM to 1 microM, had no effect on the tone of the unstimulated strips of lung parenchyma but caused a dose-dependent relaxation of strips that were contracted by 2-pyridylethylamine (2-PEA), 15 microM. Forskolin, 10 nM to 4 microM, produced a dose-dependent relaxation of both the stimulated and unstimulated lung strips. The muscarinic antagonist atropine, 1 microM, and the beta 2-adrenoceptor antagonist propranolol, 10 microM, had no effect on the dose-response curve for dimaprit-induced relaxation of the lung strip. The dose-response curve for dimaprit was shifted to the right in a dose-dependent manner by increasing concentrations of a variety of H2-antagonists. Schild plots produced a straight line for all the H2-antagonists with slopes not significantly different from unity. The equilibrium dissociation constants for the H2-antagonists on the lung strip preparation were similar to those previously reported for inhibition of the chronotropic activity of histamine on guinea-pig right atria and inhibition of [3H]-tiotidine binding to homogenates of guinea-pig lung parenchyma.