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J Neurochem. 1996 Apr;66(4):1504-9.

In vivo expression of inducible nitric oxide synthase in cerebellar neurons.

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Clinical Neuroscience Branch, National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, USA.


In the CNS, nitric oxide (NO) functions as both neuromodulator and neurotoxic agent. In vivo neuronal expression of NO synthase (NOS) has been attributed to constitutive NOS--both the neuronal and the endothelial types. The other class of NOS--the inducible NOS (iNOS)--is known to mediate toxic effects of NO in various tissues. In this study, we show for the first time that direct intracerebellar injection of endotoxin and cytokine (lipopolysaccharide and interferon-gamma) induced in vivo neuronal expression of the iNOS gene, as demonstrated by fluorescent in situ hybridization and immunohistochemical staining analyzed by confocal laser-scanning microscopy. This raises the possibility that neuronal iNOS might contribute significantly to the vulnerability of the brain to various insults.

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