Organization and function of ICC in the urinary tract.

McHale, Noel G. and Hollywood, Mark A. and Sergeant, Gerard P. and Shafei, M. and Thornbury, Keith D. and Ward, S.M. (2006) Organization and function of ICC in the urinary tract. JPhiosol, 576 (3). pp. 689-694. ISSN J Physiol. 2006 Nov 1;576(Pt 3):689-94.

[thumbnail of Org&funct.pdf]
Download (317kB) | Preview


ICC are found in both the upper and lower urinary tract. They are not found in the ureter itself but are confined to the lamina propria of the renal pelvis and pelvi-calyceal junction. They do not appear to have a primary pacemaker role (this is ascribed to atypical smooth muscle cells in the same location) but rather conduct and amplify the pacemaker signals generated by the atypical smooth muscle cells. In the bladder, ICC are widely distributed in the sub-urothelial region, in the lamina propria and at the margins of the detrusor smooth muscle bundles. Again they appear not to have a pacemaking role and such evidence as there is would suggest that they have a role in the modulation of signal transduction. The strongest evidence that ICC in the urinary tract act as pacemakers comes from studies of those in the urethra. Isolated ICC show regular spontaneous depolarizations in current clamp which resemble very closely the slow waves recorded from intact tissue. In voltage clamp they show abundant calcium-activated chloride current and spontaneous transient inward currents which can be blocked by chloride channel blockers. However, their role in the modulation of urethral tone has yet to be fully elucidated.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Interstitial cells of Cajal; ICC; Urethra; Animals; Biological Clocks/physiology; Guinea Pigs; Muscle, Smooth/cytology; Muscle, Smooth/innervation; Muscle, Smooth/physiology; Rabbits; Signal Transduction/physiology; Urinary Tract/cytology; Urinary Tract/innervation; Urinary Tract Physiological Phenomena
Subjects: Science
Research Centres: Smooth Muscle Research Centre
Depositing User: Concepta Woods
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2012 10:01
Last Modified: 11 Nov 2014 16:10

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Downloads per month over past year