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

Effects of nitric oxide on normal and ischemic cochlea of the guinea pig.

To determine whether nitric oxide (NO)/peroxynitrite plays any role in neurodestruction observed in ischemic cochlea of the guinea pig, the effects of NO donors like S-nitrosocysteine (S-NC) and nitroglycerin (NTG), peroxynitrite generators like 3-morpholinosydnonimine (SIN-1), peroxynitrite inhibitors like superoxide dismutase plus catalase (SOD/Cat), as well as NOS inhibitors like N(G)-nitro-l-arginine methyl ether (L-NAME), were tested on normal and ischemic cochleae. Various concentrations of S-NC and SIN-1 were introduced into the perilymphatic space of normal guinea pig cochlea. Quantitative scanning electron microscopy of inner and outer hair cells was carried out 2 days later. To determine the level of NO in the cochlea after 20 to 120 min of ischemia, nitrites/nitrates in the perilymph were measured. The effects of NO on the ischemic cochlea were tested by infusion of SOD/Cat, L-NAME, S-NC, and NTG into the perilymphatic space just before decapitation. Introduction of fixative into the cochlea was delayed for 15 min to investigate the effects of the chemicals on nerve endings at the base of inner hair cells. The results showed that the level of nitrites/nitrates tended to decline with increasing time of ischemia. There was no significant hair cell loss in the cochleae treated with SIN-1 or S-NC. At 15 min after ischemia, most of the nerve endings at the base of the inner hair cells were protected from damage when 1 mM S-NC or NTG was infused into the perilymph. Taken together, the results indicate that NO/peroxynitrite is unlikely to be involved in the neurodestruction in the ischemic cochlea. In fact, exogenous NO may have a neural protective effect.[1]


  1. Effects of nitric oxide on normal and ischemic cochlea of the guinea pig. Ruan, R.S., Leong, S.K., Yeoh, K.H. Exp. Neurol. (2001) [Pubmed]
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