We investigated the relaxant effect of stimulation of prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) receptor subtype EP2 as well as the involvement of a cyclic AMP (cAMP)-dependent pathway related to stimulation of EP2 receptors in urethral function in rats by evaluating effects of PGE2 and selective EP2 receptor agonist CP-533,536.Methods:
Effects of PGE2 and CP-533,536 on cAMP accumulation were assessed in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO)-K1 cells expressing rat EP2 or EP4 receptors. Relaxant responses to PGE2 and CP-533,536 (0.01–10 μmol/L) in rat urethral tissue pre-contracted with 10 μmol/L phenylephrine were evaluated, and cAMP levels in isolated rat urethral tissue treated with these compounds were determined as well. The effects of PGE2 and CP-533,536 (0.003–0.3 mg/kg intravenously) on urethral perfusion pressure (UPP) in anesthetized rats were also evaluated.Results:
PGE2 concentration-dependently increased the accumulation of cAMP in cells expressing rat EP2 (EC50 value = 1.3 nmol/L) and EP4 receptors (EC50 value = 17 nmol/L). While CP-533,536 similarly increased the accumulation of cAMP in cells expressing rat EP2 receptors (EC50 value = 3.0 nmol/L), no such effects were noted in cells expressing rat EP4 receptors up to 10 μmol/L. Both PGE2 and CP-533,536 produced relaxation and increased cAMP levels in urethral tissues in a concentration-dependent manner. PGE2 and CP-533,536 both dose-dependently decreased UPP in anesthetized rats.Conclusions:
Taken together, these results suggest that stimulation of EP2 receptors induces relaxation likely via activation of cAMP-dependent mechanisms in rat urethral tissue, leading to a reduction of UPP.