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The biochemistry and physiology of S-nitrosothiols.

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Biophysics Research Institute, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53226, USA.


S-nitrosothiols are biological metabolites of nitric oxide. It has often been suggested that they represent a more stable metabolite of nitric oxide that can either be stored, or transported, although the evidence for this is sparse. There are many unanswered questions concerning how S-nitrosothiols are formed, how they are metabolized and how they elicit biological responses. These questions are highlighted by the fact that the known chemistry of nitric oxide, thiols, and S-nitrosothiols cannot serve to explain their proposed biological activities. This review attempts to highlight the gulf between our chemical understanding of S-nitrosothiols and the proposed biological activities of these compounds with respect to guanylyl cyclase-independent nitric oxide bioactivity and also the control of vascular tone.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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