Neuroreceptor mRNA expression in the rat mesenteric artery develops independently of innervation

Jacqueline K. Phillips, Caryl E. Hill*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


Studies in autonomic targets have shown that nerves may be required for the development and maintenance of postsynaptic receptor populations. We have examined this relationship in the rat mesenteric artery, assessing mRNA expression levels for a range of neuroreceptors after neonatal sympathectomy, using 6-hydroxydopamine or antisera directed against nerve growth factor, and sensory denervation, using capsaicin. Total RNA was extracted from 28day old rats and reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction was performed, using primers specific for the α(1(A,B,D))- and α(2(A,B,C))-adrenergic, neurokinin (NK1-NK3), muscarinic (M1-M5) and P(2X) purinergic (P(2X1-7)) receptor families. Results showed no decreases in mRNA expression of any of the specific receptor subtypes after either sympathetic or sensory denervation. Small increases in mRNA expression were detected following sensory denervation for some of the receptor subtypes. We conclude that neither sympathetic nor sensory nerves are mandatory for the expression of mRNA of a range of neuroreceptors in the mesenteric vascular bed of the rat. Copyright (C) 1999 ISDN.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)377-386
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Developmental Neuroscience
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • denervation
  • development
  • messenger RNA
  • reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction
  • sensory nerve
  • sympathetic nerve


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