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Pharmacological Coupling And Functional Role For CGRP Receptors In The Vasodilation Of Rat Pial Arterioles

K. W. Hong, S. E. Yoo, S. S. Yu, J. Y. Lee, B. Y. Rhim

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In this study, we investigated the signal transduction underlying the vasodilator action of calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) in the rat pial arterioles. In an in vivo experiment, changes in pial arterial diameters (20.2 +/- 1.9 microns) were observed under suffusion with mock cerebrospinal fluid containing CGRP (10(-9)-10(-7) M) directly through a closed cranial window. Changes in intracellular adenosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (cAMP) accumulation in response to CGRP and levcromakalim were measured in the pial arterioles in an in vitro experiment. CGRP-induced vasodilation and cAMP production were significantly inhibited by specific CGRP antibody serum and CGRP-(8-37) fragment, suggesting involvement of the CGRP1 receptor subtype. Vasodilation and increase in cAMP production evoked by CGRP were inhibited not only by glibenclamide (ATP-sensitive K+ channel blocker) but also by charybdotoxin (large-conductance Ca(2+)-activated K+ channel blocker), but this was not the case for the isoproterenol-induced vasodilation and cAMP production. These findings implicate the ATP-sensitive K+ channels and the large-conductance Ca(2+)-activated K+ channels in the CGRP receptor-coupled cAMP production for vasodilation. Further study is required to identify whether the cAMP-dependent K+ channel activation is related to CGRP-induced vasorelaxation of the rat pial arterioles.