Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Am J Physiol. 1998 Jan;274(1 Pt 1):L112-8.

Nitric oxide and peroxynitrite-mediated pulmonary cell death.

Author information

Institute for Environmental Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104, USA.


Nitric oxide (.NO) can be produced within the lung, and recently inhaled nitric oxide has been used as a therapeutic agent. Peroxynitrite1 (ONOO-), the product of the nearly diffusion-limited reaction between .NO and superoxide, may represent the proximal reactive species mediating .NO injury to pulmonary cells. To investigate the physiological and pathological reactivities of .NO and ONOO- at the molecular and cellular levels, bovine pulmonary artery endothelial cells (BPAEC) and rat type II epithelial cells were exposed to .NO (0.01-2.5 microM/min for 2 h) generated by spermine-NONOate and papa-NONOate and to the same fluxes of ONOO- generated by 1,3-morpholinosydnonimine (SIN-1). Exposure to SIN-1 resulted in cellular injury and death in both cell types. Epithelial cells displayed a concentration-dependent loss of cellular viability within 8 h of exposure. In contrast, BPAEC loss of cellular viability was evident after 18 h postexposure. Events preceding cell death in BPAEC include depolarization of the mitochondrial membrane, evident as early as 6 h postexposure, loss of cellular redox activity at 16 h, and DNA fragmentation detected by in situ staining at 18 h after exposure. Exposure of BPAEC to .NO did not affect the cellular viability, but type II cells were injured in a manner similar to ONOO- exposure. .NO-mediated cellular injury within type II cells was reduced by preincubation with N-acetylcysteine. The data imply that the pathological and physiological effects of .NO may be regulated by its reactions with superoxide and reduced thiols.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Support Center