The mechanism of action of gastrin was investigated using cytochemical quantitation of hydroxyl ion production (HIP) in guinea pig gastric oxyntic mucosa. The reaction depends upon the trapping of OH ions produced during gastric stimulation and is blocked by the benzimidazole, Hassle 149/94, which inhibits the K+ + H+-ATPase and by acetazolamide, an inhibitor of carbonic anhydrase activity. It is thus a measure of hydroxyl ions produced during stimulation of the oxyntic cell and reflects upon hydrogen ion production. Gastrin (2.5 X 10(-16) -2.5 X 10(-12) M) caused a linear dose-dependent stimulation of HIP in the oxyntic cells. The response was biphasic, with an early peak at 90 s and a secondary rise at 240 s, which persisted for 10 min. Natural human gastrin (sulfated and nonsulfated) and the active COOH-terminal octapeptide fragment of gastrin stimulated HIP, whereas the biologically inert NH2-terminal (1-13) fragment of gastrin had no effect. The activation of oxyntic cell HIP by gastrin was neutralized by an antiserum directed towards the COOH-terminus of gastrin and not by nonimmune serum. Cimetidine (10(-5) M) blocked 25% and atropine (10(-5) M) had no effect on gastrin-stimulated HIP. EGTA (10(-3) M) and LaCl3 (10(-3) M) inhibited the action of gastrin by 67 and 52%, respectively. The calmodulin antagonists, trifluoperazine (10(-5) M), pimozide (10(-5) M), and the naphthalene sulfonamides, W-7 and W-13 (10(-5) M), inhibited gastrin-stimulated HIP by 45.6 38.5, 42.3, and 37.2%, respectively. Higher doses of W-7 and W-13 (10(-4) M) inhibited gastrin-stimulated HIP by 83 and 67%. The Ca2+ ionophore, A23187 (10(-4) M), stimulated HIP. Thus, it appears that gastrin stimulation of HIP is complex. 25% of its action is via a histamine-dependent pathway. 45% of its action is dependent upon extracellular Ca2+. Its action is also in part dependent upon a Ca2+/calmodulin mechanism.


A A Heldsinger, A I Vinik


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