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Effects of the muscarinic agonist, 5-methylfurmethiodide, on contraction and electrophysiology of Ascaris suum muscle.

ABSTRACT: Contraction and electrophysiological effects of 5-methylfurmethiodide (MFI), a selective muscarinic agonist in mammals, were tested on Ascaris suum muscle strips. In a contraction assay, MFI produced weak contraction and was less potent than levamisole and acetylcholine. Atropine (3microM) a non-selective muscarinic antagonist in mammalian preparations, did not affect contractions produced by MFI. Mecamylamine (3microM) a nicotinic antagonist in A. suum preparations, blocked the MFI contractions indicating that MFI had weak nicotinic agonist actions. In two-micropipette current-clamp experiments MFI, at concentrations greater than 10microM, produced concentration-dependent depolarizations and small increases in membrane conductance. The depolarizing effects were not abolished by perfusing the preparation in a calcium-free Ascaris Ringer solution to block synaptic transmission, suggesting that MFI effects were mediated by receptors on the muscle and were calcium-independent. A high concentration of mecamylamine, 30microM, only reduced the depolarizing responses by 42%, indicating that MFI also had effects on non-nicotinic receptors. Three non-nicotinic effects in the presence of 30microM mecamylamine were identified using voltage-clamp techniques: (i) MFI produced opening of mecamylamine-resistant non-selective-cation channel currents; (ii) MFI inhibited opening of voltage-activated potassium currents; and (iii) MFI increased the threshold of voltage-activated calcium currents. We suggest that a drug that is more selective for voltage-activated potassium currents, without effects on other channels like MFI, may be exploited pharmacologically as a novel anthelmintic or as an agent to potentiate the action of levamisole. In a larval migration assay we demonstrated that 4-aminopyridine (4-AP: a potassium channel blocker) potentiated the effects of levamisole but MFI did not.

SUBMITTER: Trailovic SM 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC2485209 | BioStudies | 2008-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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