The α1A/L-Adrenoceptor Subtype Mediates Contraction of the Internal Anal Sphincter to Noradrenaline
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Contraction of the internal anal sphincter contributes 50-85% towards resting anal tone. Small clinical trials with phenylephrine suggest that α1-adrenoceptor agonists could be used to increase IAS tone as a treatment for faecal incontinence. However, there are three subtypes of α1-adrenoceptor, namely α1A, α1B and α1D. It is possible that the α1A-subtype may also exist in another form known as the α1L-adrenoceptor which has a low affinity for prazosin. The aim of the present study was to determine the α1-adrenoceptor subtypes present in the IAS, with a view to possibly finding a more specific therapeutic target for the treatment of faecal incontinence.
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