Turkish Journal of Medical Sciences




Background/aim: Nicotine acts as an agonist of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChR). These receptors belong to a superfamily of ligand-gated ion channels. We previously demonstrated that nicotine increased electrical field stimulation (EFS)-induced contractile or relaxation responses, possibly by facilitating neurotransmitter release from nerve terminals in various rabbit tissues. Studies have shown that there is an interaction between the endocannabinoid and nicotinic systems. This study aimed to investigate the interaction between nicotine and the endocannabinoid system in the rabbit urine bladder and also investigate the enhancing effect of nicotine on EFS-induced contractile responses in rabbit isolated bladder smooth muscle and its interaction with the endocannabinoid system. Materials and methods: The New Zealand albino male adult rabbits were used for this study. Following scarification, the urine bladder was rapidly excised, and then uniform strips were prepared. Each strip was mounted under 1 g isometric resting tension in an organ bath containing 20 mL of Krebs-Henseleit solution. After obtaining EFS-induced contractile responses, 10-4 M concentrations of nicotine were applied to the preparations, and EFS was stopped after 5 stimulations. Following washing, the same experimental procedure was performed with the same tissue in the presence of AM251 (a cannabinoid CB1R antagonist, 10-6 M), AM630 (a cannabinoid CB2R antagonist, 10-6 M), and capsazepine (a vanilloid receptor antagonist, 3 × 10-6 M). Results: Nicotine enhanced the EFS-induced contraction responses by 17.16% ± 2.81% at a 4-Hz stimulation frequency. Cannabinoid receptor antagonists AM251 and AM630 reduced this increasing effect of nicotine although it was not significant and vanilloid receptor antagonist capsazepine did not significantly alter the nicotines' effect. Conclusion: These results show that enhancing effect of nicotine in the smooth muscle of the rabbit bladder, even though it was not significant endocannabinoid system possibly have a role in nicotines' effect.

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