BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: It has been known that various vasoactive agents are involved in the regulation of cardiac function through the modification of the K+ channel activities, including the ATP-sensitive K+ channel (KATP). We examined the effects of several vasoactive agents on the cardiac KATP currents in isolated cardiac myocytes. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Ventricular myocytes were isolated from the hearts of ICR mice by enzymatic digestion. The channel currents were recorded by the excised inside-out and cell-attached patch clamp configurations. RESULTS: In the excised inside-out patches, bradykinin (BRK; 1-10 micrometer) and prostaglandin I2 (PGI; 10-50 micrometer) did not affect the channel activities, whereas the vasodilators increased the attenuated channel activities in the presence of 100 micrometer ATP. BRK and PGI in parallel shifted the dose-response curves of ATP (1-1,000 micrometer), and this inhibited the KATP currents to the right. Endothelin (ET-1; 0.1-1 nM) and leukotriene D4 (LTD; 3-10 micrometer) decreased the channel activities immediately after making the inside-out patches. However, the vasoconstrictors did not affect the attenuated channel activities by ATP. In the cell-attached patches, both BRK and PGI increased the channel activities and these effects were markedly attenuated by glibenclamide (50 micrometer). ET-1 and LTD did not affect the baseline channel activities in the cell-attached patches, but they markedly attenuated the dinitrophenol-induced activities. CONCLUSION: It was inferred that certain vasoactive substances are involved in the regulation of cardiac KATP channel activities, and that bradykinin and PGI2 enhance the channel activities, and ET-1 and LTD4 inhibit the channel activities.