What's known on the subject? and What does the study add?
Experimental urethral obstruction in rats alters micturition patterns with non-voiding activity (NVA) during filling cystometry, showing similarity to that observed in human detrusor overactivity. Several drug classes with therapeutic potential in overactive bladder in humans have been tested in this model in rats, rabbits or guinea pigs, but no detailed analysis of drug effects on cystometric patterns has been published.
The present study uses a rat model of overactivity with partial bladder outflow obstruction (BOO) in combination with the procedures to analyse NVA to study the effects of the anticholinergic drug tolterodine and the novel β3-adrenoceptor agonist mirabegron. The current data for the first time show that NVA in rats with BOO is sensitive to both the muscarinergic antagonist tolterodine and the β3-adrenoceptor agonist mirabegron, but with clear differences between the two drugs: during progression of bladder filling, tolterodine affected both the amplitude and frequency of NVA whereas mirabegron affected primarily the frequency. In addition, tolterodine dose-dependently reduced voiding contractions, while mirabegron did not. A model is proposed to account for these observations where both agents act on a ‘pacemaker-like’ mechanism which is sensitive to cholinergic excitatory and beta-adrenergic inhibitory inputs. Such concepts could provide insights into the nature of overactive bladder and the site of action of key therapeutic drugs.