Smooth Muscle Research Centre
Dundalk Institute of Technology
0429 370 526
0429 370 509Research Interests I began to study smooth muscle electrophysiology during a sabbatical year in Kent Sanders' lab in Nevada in 1990-91. Since then, I have focussed on two main areas: lymphatic vessels and the lower urinary tract, including spontaneous pacemaking mechanisms and modulation of activity by autonomic neurotransmitters in these tissues. Experimental techniques include patchclamp of single cells, confocal imaging, and mechanical studies of whole tissue. We have identified pacemaker cells in the urethra which resemble the interstitial cells of Cajal in the gut. A major objective at present is to elucidate the pacemaker mechanisms in these cells and to determine their role in the regulation of urethral tone.Recently, I have begun to study the corpus cavernosum with a view to understanding how penile erection and detumescence are regulated. Publications Craven M, Sergeant GP, Hollywood MA, McHale NG, Thornbury KD.
Modulation of spontaneous Ca2+-activated Cl- currents in the rabbit corpus cavernosum by the NO/cGMP pathway.
J Physiol 556.2 (2004) pp 495–506.Coates et al.. (2004).Ultra-sensitivity, speed and resolution: Optimizing low-light microscopy with the back-illuminated electron multiplying CCD. Journal of Biomedical Optics, 2004, (in press).Bradley JE, Anderson UA, Woolsey SM, Thornbury KD, McHale NG, Hollywood MA. Characterisation of T-type calcium current and its contribution to electrical activity in the rabbit urethra. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol, May 2004; 286: C1078 - 1088. Hollywood MA, Woolsey S, Walsh IK, Keane PF, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. T- and L-type Ca2+ currents in freshly dispersed smooth muscle cells from the human proximal urethra.
J Physiol. 2003 Aug 1;550(Pt 3):753-64. Hollywood MA, Sergeant GP, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Activation of Ca2+-activated C1-current by depolarizing steps in rabbit urethral interstitial cells. American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology 2003; 285: C327-C333. McCloskey KD, Hollywood MA, Thornbury KD, Ward SM, McHale NG. Kit-like immunopositive cells in sheep mesenteric lymphatic vessels. Cell and Tissue Research 2002; 310: 77-84. Sergeant GP, Thornbury KD, McHale NG, Hollywood MA. Characterization of norepinephrine-evoked inward currents in interstitial cells isolated from the rabbit urethra. American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology 2002; 283: C885-C894. Sergeant GP, Hollywood MA, McCloskey KD, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Role of IP3 in modulation of spontaneous activity in pacemaker cells of rabbit urethra. American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology 2001; 280: 1349-1356. Sergeant GP, Hollywood MA, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Spontaneous Ca2+ activated C1- currents in isolated urethral smooth muscle cells. Journal of Urology 2001; 2001: 1161-1166. Toland HM, McCloskey KD, Thornbury KD, McHale NG, Hollywood MA. Ca2(+)-activated C1- current in sheep lymphatic smooth muscle.
American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology 2000; 279: C1327-C1335. Hollywood MA, McCloskey KD, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Characterization of outward K+ currents in isolated smooth muscle cells from sheep urethra. American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology 2000; 279: 420-428. Sergeant GP, Hollywood MA, McCloskey KD, Thornbury KD, McHale NG. Specialised pacemaking cells in the rabbit uretha. Journal of Physiology London 2000; 526: 359-366. McHale NG, Thornbury KD, Hollywood MA. 5-HT inhibits spontaneous contractility of isolated sheep mesenteric lymphatics via activation of 5-HT4 receptors. Microvascular Research 2000; 60: 261-268. McCloskey KD, Toland HM, Hollywood MA, Thornbury KD, McHale NG. Hyperpolarization-activated inward current in isolated sheep mesenteric lymphatic smooth muscle. Journal of Physiology 1999; 521: 201-211. Hollywood MA, Cotton KD, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Enhancement of Ca2+-dependent outward current in sheep bladder myocytes by evans blue dye. Pflugers Archiv - European Journal of Physiology 1998; 435: 631-636. Hollywood MA, Cotton KD, Thornbury KD, McHale NG. Tetrodotoxin-sensitive sodium current in sheep lymphatic smooth muscle. Journal of Physiology 1997; 503: 13-20. Cotton KD, Hollywood MA, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Outward currents in smooth muscle cells isolated from sheep mesenteric lymphatics. Journal of Physiology 1997; 503: 1-11. Cotton KD, Hollywood MA, McHale NG, Thornbury KD. Ca2+ current and Ca2+-activated chloride current in isolated smotth muscle cells of the sheep urethra. Journal of Physiology 1997; 505: 121-131. Grant Income 2003-2006- Diabetes UK- Ca2+ signalling in isolated myocytes from the rabbit corpus cavernosum.
2001-2004 - Action Research – Physiology and Pharmacology of human urethra. The purpose of this study is to investigate the ionic mechanisms underlying the control and modulation of tone in the human urethra.2002-2003 -Research into Aging Incontinence Research Grant- Ionic mechanisms underlying pacemaking in the whole isolated rat urethra.2002-2005 -Wellcome Trust - Pacemaker mechanisms in isolated interstitial cells of the rabbit urethra