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09 January 2002

Tonal nitric oxide and health--a free radical and a scavenger of free radicals.

Patrick Cadet, Kirk Mantione, Danielle Benz, Wei Zhu, George Stefano

Med Sci Monit 2002; 8(1): RA1-4 :: ID: 420956

Abstract

Basal/tonal nitric oxide (NO) production helps maintain particular microenvironments,i.e., vascular. Besides NO's function in controlling the activation state of various tissues such asimmune cells, its presence appears to modulate other free radical levels, i.e., H2O2, in these same tissuesand indeed these processes may be one and the same. Thus, by being a free radical, along with the abilityto scavenge other free radicals, NO is placed in a pivotal regulatory position. We surmise that in theabsence of adequate NO release other free radicals may go 'unchecked' and, therefore, initiate tissuedamage. Furthermore, under these circumstances, proinflammatory events will occur due to heightened cellsensitivity and a diminished control of NF-kappaB. In an excess situation, and one without an appropriatecircumstance, i.e., microbial action, NO may become the harmful agent. Hence, balancing basal NO productionin body compartments may represent a fundamental process in maintaining general, long-term health.

Keywords: Endothelium, Vascular, Free Radical Scavengers, Free Radicals, Nitric Oxide, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov, Research Support, U.S. Gov

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Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750
Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750