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Br J Pharmacol. 1995 Aug;115(7):1302-6.

Enhancing and inhibitory effects of nitric oxide on superoxide anion generation in human polymorphonuclear leukocytes.

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Department of Pharmacology, Tokyo College of Pharmacy, Hachioji, Japan.


1. The effects of sodium nitroprusside (SNP, a nitric oxide donor) and authentic nitric oxide (NO) on superoxide anion (O2-) generation were investigated in human polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs). 2. Neither SNP (10 nM to 10 microM) nor NO (40 nM to 40 microM) alone induced O2- generation or change of intracellular Ca2+ concentration ([Ca2+]i) in human PMNs. 3. Pretreatment with SNP or NO at the concentrations used (SNP, 10 nM to 10 microM: NO, 40 nM to 40 microM) showed a biphasic concentration-dependent effect on O2- generation induced by f-methionyl-leucyl-phenylalanine (FMLP). Low concentrations of SNP (10 nM to 100 nM) and NO (400 nM) did not affect either basal cyclic GMP levels or cyclic GMP levels stimulated by FMLP, but enhanced FMLP-induced O2- generation and [Ca2+]i elevation. On the other hand, high concentrations of SNP (10 microM) and NO (40 microM) alone elevated cyclic GMP levels and inhibited FMLP-induced O2- generation and [Ca2+]i elevation. 4. 8-Bromo-cyclic GMP (8-Br-cyclic GMP) at concentrations ranging from 1 microM to 1 mM did not induce O2- generation on its own and had little effect on FMLP-induced O2- generation and [Ca2+]i elevation. 5. Addition of a high concentration of NO (40 microM) decreased authentic O2- formation by pyrogallol in a cell-free system, but a low concentration of NO (400 nM) had no effect on this. On the other hand, addition of SNP in the concentration-ranges used had no effect on authentic O2- formation by pyrogallol. 6. In this study, we have shown that SNP and NO have dual effects (enhancement and inhibition) on 02- generation induced by FMLP in human peripheral PMNs. The results suggest that the enhancement observed with SNP and NO at low concentrations is not mediated by activation of the guanylate cyclase-cyclic GMP pathway. The suppressive effect of SNP and NO at higher concentrations is mediated by the NO-induced O2--scavenging effect and activation of the guanylate cyclase-cyclic GMP pathway.

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