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FEBS Lett. 1997 Aug 4;412(3):511-4.

Nitric oxide synthase isoform III gene expression in rat liver is up-regulated by lipopolysaccharide and lipoteichoic acid.

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Department of Anesthesiology, University of Regensburg, Germany.


This study was done to investigate the influence of Gram-negative and Gram-positive sepsis on the expression of the three isoforms of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) gene in rat liver and kidney. Male Sprague-Dawley rats were treated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 10 mg/kg i.v.) as an in vivo model for Gram-negative sepsis or lipoteichoic acid (LTA, 10 mg/kg i.v.) as an in vivo model for Gram-positive sepsis. Animals were killed 12 h and 24 h after i.v. treatment. NOS mRNA of the three isoforms was determined by RNase protection assay. NOS II gene expression was strongly induced after LPS or LTA treatment in rat liver and kidney, indicating the efficacy of this treatment to induce sepsis. We found no change of NOS I gene expression after LPS or LTA injection in rat liver and kidney. NOS III gene expression was increased about 8-fold 12 h and about 5-fold 24 h after induction of sepsis in the rat liver whereas in the kidney there was no significant increase in NOS III gene expression. After correction for length NOS III mRNA was about 4- and 40-fold more abundant 12 h and 24 h after LPS treatment than NOS II mRNA in the liver, respectively. Twelve and 24 h after LTA treatment NOS III mRNA was about 18- and 140-fold more abundant than NOS II in the liver. These findings suggest that NOS III is an even more potent source of NO than NOS II in the liver after stimulation with LPS or LTA.

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