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We have previously reported the production of endothelin, a potent vasoconstrictor peptide, by porcine cerebral microvessel endothelia and suggested its important role in the regulation of local blood flow within the brain. In our present study, radioimmunoassay with anti-porcine endothelin antiserura revealed that endothelin, produced by cerebral microvessel endothelia grown on a filter, is released mainly to the basement membrane side, not the vascular lumen side. This finding suggests that endothelin constricts arterioles locally where it is produced by endothelia. We also found that cerebral microvessel endothelia produce less endothelin under low oxygen pressure and more endothelin under low carbon dioxide pressure. Our results suggest that endothelin has a role in the regulation of cerebral blood flow in response to oxygen and carbon dioxide pressure.