Myogenic Properties of Blood Vessels In Vitro

  • George Osol
Part of the Vascular Biomedicine book series (VB)

Abstract

It would be a disservice to begin a chapter on the myogenic behavior of blood vessels in vitro without describing the work of Sir William Bayliss almost 90 years ago. Using primitive recording techniques (a smoked drum), he removed a carotid artery from the neck of a dog three hours after asphyxiation, cannulated one end, tied off the other, and filled the segment with defibrinated blood. The preparation was connected to a mercury manometer and, when pressure was elevated, the vessel underwent a powerful contraction and “appeared to writhe like a worm.” Decreasing the pressure produced “considerable relaxation.” Unfortunately, the experimental detail is scant and we have no quantitative measure of the response because, in Bayliss’ words, “I regret that the tracing was spoilt in varnishing, so that I am unable to reproduce it here.”1 Nonetheless, Bayliss’ observation captures the quintessence of myogenic theory as it applies to vascular behavior—pressure orstretch-induced activation of smooth muscle cells that leads to a decrease in arterial diameter.

Keywords

Permeability Mercury Smoke Eter Cardiol 

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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

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  • George Osol

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