Exogenous nitric oxide (NO) suppresses endothelium-derived NO production. We were interested in determining whether this is also the case in flow-induced endothelium-derived NO production. If so, then is the mechanism because of intracellular depletion of tetrahydrobiopterin [BH4; a cofactor of NO synthase (NOS)], which results in superoxide production by uncoupled NOS? Isolated canine femoral arteries were perfused with 100 μM S-nitroso-N-acetylpenicillamine (SNAP; an NO donor) and/or 64 μM BH4. Perfusion of SNAP suppressed flow-induced NO production, which was evaluated as a change in the slope of the linear relationship between perfusion rate and NO production rate (P < 0.02 vs. control; n = 7). Subsequent BH4 perfusion returned the slope to the control level. Concomitant perfusion of SNAP and BH4 retained the control-level NO production (n = 7). Concomitant perfusion of SNAP and 4,5-dihydroxy-1,3-benzene disulfonic acid (Tiron; 1 mM; a membrane-permeable superoxide scavenger) also retained the control-level NO production (n = 7), whereas perfusion of Tiron after SNAP could not return the NO production to the control level (P < 0.02 vs. control; n = 7). We also found a significant decrease in BH4 concentration in the endothelial cells after SNAP perfusion. In conclusion, these results indicate that exogenous NO suppresses the flow-induced, endothelium-derived NO production by superoxide released from uncoupled NOS because of intracellular BH4 depletion.
- nitric oxide synthase
- shear stress
- Copyright © 2005 by the American Physiological Society