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FASEB J. 2005 Jul;19(9):1196-8. Epub 2005 Apr 29.

Hydrogen sulfide is a novel mediator of lipopolysaccharide-induced inflammation in the mouse.

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  • 1Department of Pharmacology, National University of Singapore, Singapore.

Abstract

Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) is synthesized in the body from L-cysteine by several enzymes including cystathionine-gamma-lyase (CSE). To date, there is little information about the potential role of H2S in inflammation. We have now investigated the part played by H2S in endotoxin-induced inflammation in the mouse. E. coli lipopolysaccharide (LPS) administration produced a dose (10 and 20 mg/kg ip)- and time (6 and 24 h)-dependent increase in plasma H2S concentration. LPS (10 mg/kg ip, 6 h) increased plasma H2S concentration from 34.1 +/- 0.7 microM to 40.9 +/- 0.6 microM (n=6, P<0.05) while H2S formation from added L-cysteine was increased in both liver and kidney. CSE gene expression was also increased in both liver (94.2+/-2.7%, n=6, P<0.05) and kidney (77.5+/-3.2%, n=6, P<0.05). LPS injection also elevated lung (148.2+/-2.6%, n=6, P<0.05) and kidney (78.8+/-8.2%, n=6, P<0.05) myeloperoxidase (MPO, a marker of tissue neutrophil infiltration) activity alongside histological evidence of lung, liver, and kidney tissue inflammatory damage. Plasma nitrate/nitrite (NOx) concentration was additionally elevated in a time- and dose-dependent manner in LPS-injected animals. To examine directly the possible proinflammatory effect of H2S, mice were administered sodium hydrosulfide (H2S donor drug, 14 micromol/kg ip) that resulted in marked histological signs of lung inflammation, increased lung and liver MPO activity, and raised plasma TNF-alpha concentration (4.6+/-1.4 ng/ml, n=6). In contrast, DL-propargylglycine (CSE inhibitor, 50 mg/kg ip), exhibited marked anti-inflammatory activity as evidenced by reduced lung and liver MPO activity, and ameliorated lung and liver tissue damage. In separate experiments, we also detected significantly higher (150.5+/-43.7 microM c.f. 43.8+/-5.1 microM, n=5, P<0.05) plasma H2S levels in humans with septic shock. These findings suggest that H2S exhibits proinflammatory activity in endotoxic shock and suggest a new approach to the development of novel drugs for this condition.

PMID:
15863703
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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