Distribution of dopamine β-hydroxylase and neuropeptide Y-immunoreactive nerves in healthy equine lungs

Ioana M. Sonea From the Departments of Anatomy (Sonea, Bowker) and Large Animal Clinical Sciences (Sonea, Robinson, Broadstone), College of Veterinary Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1314.

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Robert M. Bowker From the Departments of Anatomy (Sonea, Bowker) and Large Animal Clinical Sciences (Sonea, Robinson, Broadstone), College of Veterinary Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1314.

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N. Edward Robinson From the Departments of Anatomy (Sonea, Bowker) and Large Animal Clinical Sciences (Sonea, Robinson, Broadstone), College of Veterinary Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1314.

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Richard V. Broadstone From the Departments of Anatomy (Sonea, Bowker) and Large Animal Clinical Sciences (Sonea, Robinson, Broadstone), College of Veterinary Medicine, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1314.

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Summary

Immunohistochemical methods were used to determine the distribution of pulmonary nerves containing either an enzymatic marker of adrenergic nerves, dopamine β hydroxylase, or the putative neurotransmitter neuropeptide Y in 7 equids with healthy lungs. Nerves immunoreactive for these substances were found on airway smooth muscle in nearly all the samples of healthy equine lung examined. These nerves were generally more numerous in the larger airways but could be detected even in noncartilaginous bronchioles. Pulmonary and bronchial vessels also contained numerous immunoreactive nerves. On the basis of these findings, we suggest that dopamine β-hydroxylase- and neuropeptide Y-immunoreactive nerves may be involved in the regulation of airway and vascular diameter in equids.

Summary

Immunohistochemical methods were used to determine the distribution of pulmonary nerves containing either an enzymatic marker of adrenergic nerves, dopamine β hydroxylase, or the putative neurotransmitter neuropeptide Y in 7 equids with healthy lungs. Nerves immunoreactive for these substances were found on airway smooth muscle in nearly all the samples of healthy equine lung examined. These nerves were generally more numerous in the larger airways but could be detected even in noncartilaginous bronchioles. Pulmonary and bronchial vessels also contained numerous immunoreactive nerves. On the basis of these findings, we suggest that dopamine β-hydroxylase- and neuropeptide Y-immunoreactive nerves may be involved in the regulation of airway and vascular diameter in equids.

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