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Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat. 2002 Aug;68-69:177-85.

Phenotypes of the COX-deficient mice indicate physiological and pathophysiological roles for COX-1 and COX-2.

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Laboratory of Environmental Carcinogenesis and Mutagenesis, National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.


The development of mice deficient in either cyclooxygenase-1 (COX-1) or COX-2, as well as mice deficient in both COX isoforms, has provided models to elucidate the physiological and pathophysiological roles of these enzymes. The findings obtained with the COX-deficient mice suggest that COX-2 may be more important than COX-1 for supplying prostaglandins (PGs) to maintain tissue homeostasis. Furthermore, both isoforms may be involved in the development of diseases, such as inflammation and cancer. Therefore, the contribution of each isoform to the prevention or development of disease is more complex than originally described. Studies with the COX-deficient mice suggest that in addition to COX-2-selective inhibition, therapeutic advances may also be achieved with COX-1-selective inhibitors which lack gastrointestinal side effects.

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