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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Nov 9;101(45):15944-8. Epub 2004 Oct 14.

Neuronal nitric oxide synthase negatively regulates xanthine oxidoreductase inhibition of cardiac excitation-contraction coupling.

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  • 1Departments of Medicine (Cardiology Division) and Anesthesia and Critical Care Medicine, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, Baltimore, MD 21287, USA.


Although interactions between superoxide (O(2)(.-)) and nitric oxide underlie many physiologic and pathophysiologic processes, regulation of this crosstalk at the enzymatic level is poorly understood. Here, we demonstrate that xanthine oxidoreductase (XOR), a prototypic superoxide O(2)(.-) -producing enzyme, and neuronal nitric oxide synthase (NOS1) coimmunoprecipitate and colocalize in the sarcoplasmic reticulum of cardiac myocytes. Deficiency of NOS1 (but not endothelial NOS, NOS3) leads to profound increases in XOR-mediated O(2)(.-) production, which in turn depresses myocardial excitation-contraction coupling in a manner reversible by XOR inhibition with allopurinol. These data demonstrate a unique interaction between a nitric oxide and an O(2)(.-) -generating enzyme that accounts for crosstalk between these signaling pathways; these findings demonstrate a direct antioxidant mechanism for NOS1 and have pathophysiologic implications for the growing number of disease states in which increased XOR activity plays a role.

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