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Can a Particulate, Insoluble (1-3)- -D-glucan Cause General Hypo-Responsive Activity in Guinea Pig Respiratory Smooth Muscle?

A. Jones and P.J. Nicholls


There are two major mechanisms by which a contraction can be mediated in airway smooth muscle, namely either a receptor-operated contraction or a depolarisation-induced contraction. Glucan from baker's yeast, an insoluble, particulate glucan, can induce hypo-responsiveness to methacholine-induced (a receptor-operated contractile agent) contractions in guinea pig respiratory smooth muscle. The present experiment was designed to determine whether this effect was either specific to methacholine, or part of a more general hypo-responsive phenomenom. Using immersed trachea and pefused lung tissue models, contractions were produced with one of a number of constrictor agents. The effect of exposure of the airway smooth muscle to 50µg/ml glucan (from baker's yeast) on these responses was then determined. This glucan caused some degree of hypo-responsiveness to all contractile agents used. This suggests that baker's yeast glucan acts by a non-specific mechanism.

Reprinted from Proceedings of the 1998 Beltwide Cotton Conferences pp. 254 - 258
©National Cotton Council, Memphis TN

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Document last modified Sunday, Dec 6 1998