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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)
 
 
 

Expression of nitric oxide synthase isoforms and arginase in normal human skin and chronic venous leg ulcers.

Chronic venous ulcers, an example of abnormal wound healing, show chronic inflammation with defective matrix deposition which together with the underlying vascular pathology, result in delayed healing. L-arginine is known to be metabolized by one of two pathways: nitric oxide synthase ( NOS), producing nitric oxide (NO), or arginase, producing ornithine. NO is involved in many pathological conditions including vascular and inflammatory disorders. This study therefore investigated the distribution, level and activity of NOS and arginase in chronic venous ulcers in comparison with normal skin, using immunocytochemistry, western blotting, and enzyme assays. The results demonstrated an increased distribution of both NOS and arginase in chronic venous ulcer tissue compared with normal skin, with inflammatory cells and vascular endothelial cells as the main sources. These data were confirmed by western blot analysis, which showed increased levels of both enzymes in chronic venous ulcers. Moreover, there was significantly increased activity of both total NOS (p<0.04) and inducible NOS (p<0.05) in chronic venous ulcer tissue compared with normal skin, and significantly increased activity of arginase (p<0.01) in chronic venous ulcer tissue in comparison with normal skin. NO is known to combine with hydroxyl free radicals forming peroxynitrite, a potent free radical which causes tissue destruction. NO overexpression in chronic venous ulcers may be involved directly or indirectly (through production of peroxynitrite) in the pathogenesis and delayed healing of chronic venous ulcers, through its effects on vasculature, inflammation, and collagen deposition. Arginase is known to enhance matrix deposition. Thus, increased levels of arginase in chronic venous ulcers could contribute to the pathogenesis of lipodermatosclerosis associated with chronic venous insufficiency, predisposing to the formation of chronic venous ulcers and also to matrix cuff formation around blood vessels.[1]

References

  1. Expression of nitric oxide synthase isoforms and arginase in normal human skin and chronic venous leg ulcers. Abd-El-Aleem, S.A., Ferguson, M.W., Appleton, I., Kairsingh, S., Jude, E.B., Jones, K., McCollum, C.N., Ireland, G.W. J. Pathol. (2000) [Pubmed]
 
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