This study examined the possible involvement of cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) in the control of ciliary action of Schistosoma mansoni miracidia. Miracidia immobilized in hypertonic NaCl solution were treated with 3 compounds that are known to increase intracellular cAMP concentrations. Forskolin, at a concentration of 50 μM, induced 50.1% of the miracidia to swim in hypertonic solution. The corresponding values obtained for 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine (IBMX) at 1 mM and 8-bromo-cAMP at 10 mM were 42.2 and 50.4%, respectively. The motility-enhancing effect of these compounds was dose dependent. Nevertheless, the swimming speed of miracidia activated in this way was only 10% of that observed in artificial pond water (APW). Cholera toxin had no apparent effect on miracidia swimming in hypertonic NaCl solution. Likewise, swimming in APW treated with forskolin at 50 μM, IBMX at 1 mM, or 8-bromo-cAMP at 10 mM did not induce any apparent change in motility. Miracidia swimming in APW were then treated with 3 compounds that decrease the intracellular concentration of cAMP. MDL-12,330A, at a concentration of 250 μM, caused a dramatic decrease in swimming over a period of 1 hr. Likewise, SQ22536 and imidazole, at concentrations of 20 and 50 mM, respectively, caused 36.5 and 73.4% decreases in swimming under the same conditions. Finally, inhibitors of cAMP-dependent protein kinase, i.e., PKI(14-22)amide, H89, and H88, completely inhibited miracidia swimming in APW at concentrations of 25, 50, and 100 μM, respectively. These results suggest that cAMP and cAMP- dependent protein kinase are involved in osmosis-controlled ciliary motion of schistosome miracidia.

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