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

17beta-estradiol inhibition of NADPH oxidase expression in human endothelial cells.

We investigated the hypothesis that the antiatherosclerotic effect of 17beta-estradiol (E2) is due to a shift in the nitric oxide (NO)/superoxide (O2-) balance in the vessel wall, thereby increasing the bioavailability of NO. In human umbilical vein cultured endothelial cells, E2 (1-100 nmol/l), but not 17alpha-estradiol, caused a time- and concentration-dependent decrease in expression of the NADPH oxidase subunit gp91phox (up to 60% inhibition at both the mRNA and protein level). This effect was prevented by coincubation with the estrogen receptor antagonists tamoxifen and ICI 182,780 (1 micromol/l each). Within the same concentration range, E2 also up-regulated endothelial nitric oxide synthase expression ( approximately twofold). Moreover, preincubation of the cells with E2 or a gp91phox antisense oligonucleotide significantly decreased their capacity to generate O2- on phorbol ester stimulation (i.e., assembly of the active NADPH oxidase complex). Blockade of NO synthase activity, on the other hand, had no effect on phorbol ester-stimulated O2- formation. In addition, E2 (100 nmol/l) inhibited the increase in adhesion molecule and chemokine expression in cells exposed to cyclic strain. Cyclic strain enhanced endothelial O2- formation, thereby offsetting the inhibitory effect of NO on the expression of these gene products. E2 thus seems to act as an antioxidant at the genomic level which by improving the NO/O2- balance normalizes expression of proatherosclerotic gene products in endothelial cells.[1]


  1. 17beta-estradiol inhibition of NADPH oxidase expression in human endothelial cells. Wagner, A.H., Schroeter, M.R., Hecker, M. FASEB J. (2001) [Pubmed]
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