A comparison of the excitatory and inhibitory effects of non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic nerve stimulation and exogenously applied ATP on a variety of smooth muscle preparations from different vertebrate species

Br J Pharmacol. 1972 Oct;46(2):234-42. doi: 10.1111/j.1476-5381.1972.tb06868.x.


1. The responses to non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic nerve stimulation have been compared with those to exogenously applied ATP on seventeen different tissues from a number of vertebrate classes.2. Stimulation of all the mammalian gut preparations studied (with the exception of the guinea-pig ileum) after blockade of the effects of adrenergic and cholinergic nerve stimulation by guanethidine (3.5 muM) and hyoscine (1.3 muM) caused inhibition; exogenously applied ATP mimicked this inhibitory response.3. Stimulation of the guinea-pig ileum in the presence of hyoscine and guanethidine, usually caused a diphasic response, relaxation followed by contraction; exogenously applied ATP mimicked this response, in contrast to acetylcholine and noradrenaline which caused excitation and relaxation respectively.4. Stimulation of preparations of lower vertebrate gut and guinea-pig bladder in the presence of hyoscine and guanethidine caused contraction; exogenously applied ATP mimicked this contractile response.5. In each preparation the time course of the response to ATP was similar or identical to the response to non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic nerve stimulation.6. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that a purine nucleotide may be the transmitter substance released from non-adrenergic, non-cholinergic nerves supplying smooth muscle preparations from a number of vertebrate classes.

MeSH terms

  • Acetylcholine / pharmacology
  • Adenosine Triphosphate / pharmacology*
  • Animals
  • Bufo marinus
  • Colon / physiology
  • Duodenum / physiology
  • Electric Stimulation
  • Fishes
  • Guanethidine / pharmacology
  • Guinea Pigs
  • Humans
  • Ileum / physiology
  • Lizards
  • Mice
  • Muscle Contraction / drug effects
  • Muscle, Smooth / physiology*
  • Norepinephrine / pharmacology
  • Rats
  • Rectum / physiology
  • Scopolamine / pharmacology
  • Stomach / physiology
  • Urinary Bladder / physiology


  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • Scopolamine
  • Acetylcholine
  • Norepinephrine
  • Guanethidine