Endothelin-1 (ET-1) has been shown to potentiate cholinergic neurotransmission in human bronchus as well as in airways from a variety of animal species, suggesting that ET receptors exist prejunctionally on airway cholinergic nerves. We have successfully isolated and maintained rat tracheal parasympathetic neurons in culture. Most cultured cells were associated with specific fluorescence for the nerve cell marker protein gene product 9.5 (PGP 9.5). These cultures contained a high proportion of parasympathetic neurons. Importantly, specific immunofluorescent antibodies for ETB receptors were colocalized with those for PGP 9.5, Therefore, for the first time, ETB receptors have been shown to exist on airway parasympathetic neurons in culture.