Neuropeptide Y stimulates proliferation of human vascular smooth muscle cells: cooperation with noradrenaline and ATP

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Since the sympathetic nervous system has been shown to exert a trophic influence on vascular smooth muscle cells (SMC), we studied the growth regulating effects of neuropeptide Y (NPY) in cooperation with the sympathetic co-transmitters noradrenaline and adenosine triphosphate (ATP) in human vascular SMC. NPY stimulated DNA synthesis in human SMC grown from subcutaneous arteries and veins (diameter: 0.4 mm) measured by [3H]thymidine incorporation. Also cell number and protein synthesis were stimulated. The effect was mediated through the Y1-receptor and not Y2 or Y3 since the Y1-selective NPY analogue Pro34-NPY and peptide YY stimulated mitogenesis in the same magnitude as NPY while the NPY-fragment NPY13-36 only had minor effects. The effect was blocked by pretreating the cells with pertussis toxin indicating a Gi/o-coupled effect. The other sympathetic co-transmitters, noradrenaline and ATP, also stimulated mitogenesis in the human SMC in a similar magnitude as NPY. When added together NPY and noradrenaline potentiated each other in the mitogenic response. ATP had mainly additive effects. This is the first demonstration that NPY, noradrenaline and ATP stimulates growth in human vascular SMC. This suggests a role of the sympathetic cotransmitters in modulating vascular tone, but also by inducing hypertrophy/hyperplasia with possible clinical consequences.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cell and Molecular Biology


  • Mitosis, Sympathetic nervous system
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-265
JournalRegulatory Peptides
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1994
Publication categoryResearch