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Abstract: Maxadilan is a potent vasodilator peptide isolated from salivary glands extracts of the hematophagous sand fly. Recently, it was demonstrated that maxadilan binds to PACAP receptor type 1 in mammals, although maxadilan has no significant amino acid sequence homology with PACAP. In the present study, we demonstrated that maxadilan is a specific agonist of PACAP type 1 receptor (PACAP/VIP receptor 1; PVR1) as determined by the binding assay of [125I]PACAP27 and cAMP accumulation using CHO cells stably expressing PVR1, VIP1 receptor (PVR2), and VIP2 receptor (PVR3), and that the deleted peptide (#25-41) of maxadilan (termed as M65) is a specific antagonist of PVR1. In addition, maxadilan shares the binding sites for PACAP and stimulates cAMP in cultured rat cortical neurons. VIP stimulates cAMP accumulation probably through the binding to PVR1 since M65 blocks the VIP-induced cAMP accumulation in cultured rat cortical neurons.