The current study investigates whether the spinal pelvic nerve-to-external urethra sphincter (EUS) reflex potentiation can be induced by a mechanical stimulation and whether the glutamatergic mechanism is involved in yielding such a reflex potentiation. The external urethra sphincter electromyogram (EUSE) activity, evoked by a single or by repetitive pelvic nerve stimulation, in 30 anesthetized rats was recorded with/without bladder saline distension. Without saline distension (0 cmH2O), a single pulse nerve stimulation evoked a single action potential in the reflex activity, whereas repetitive pelvic stimulation and saline distension (6∼20 cmH2O) both elicited a long-lasting reflex potentiation (20.05 ± 3.21 and 75.01 ± 9.87 spikes/stimulation, respectively). The saline distension-induced pelvic nerve-to-EUS reflex potentiation was abolished by D-2-amino-5-phosphonovalerate [APV; a glutamatergic N -methyl-D-aspartic acid (NMDA) receptor antagonist; 100 μM, 10 μl, 1.72 ± 0.31 spikes/stimulation] and attenuated by 2,3-dihydroxy-6-nitro-7-sulfamoylbenzo (F) quinoxaline [NBQX; a glutamatergic α-amino-3-hydroxy-5-methyl-4-isoxazoleproprionate (AMPA) receptor antagonist; 100 μM, 10 μl, 26.16 ± 7.27 spikes/stimulation], but was not affected by bicuculline (a GABAergic antagonist; 100 μM, 10 μl, 53.62 ± 15.54 spikes/stimulation). Intrathecal administration of glutamate (31.12 ± 8.25 spikes/stimulation, 100 μM, 10 μl) and NMDA (26.25 ± 4.12 spikes/stimulation, 100 μM, 10 μl) both induced a long-lasting pelvic nerve-to-EUS reflex potentiation without saline distension, which was similar to the findings observed from saline distension only. The duration of the contraction wave of the urethra was elongated by the saline distension-induced pelvic nerve-to-EUS reflex potentiation, whereas the peak pressure of the contraction wave was not affected. Our findings suggest that saline distension in the bladder elicits a pelvic nerve-to-EUS reflex potentiation and the glutamatergic mechanism contributes to the presence of such a reflex potentiation.
- Pelvic nerve
ASJC Scopus subject areas