The action of nitric oxide to enhance cell survival in chick cardiomyocytes is mediated through a cGMP and ERK1/2 pathway while p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase-dependent pathways do not alter cell death Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • The objective of this study was to determine whether the dual action of nitric oxide (NO) on cardiomyocyte cell viability is mediated through p38 mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK)-induced cell death and extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK1/2)-mediated cell survival pathways, and whether either of these is mediated through a cGMP-protein kinase G (PKG) pathway. Cell viability of embryonic chick cardiomyocytes was assessed by the MTT assay, which is based on the ability of viable cells to reduce 3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyl tetrazolium bromide. The NO donor sodium nitroprusside (SNP) produced a significant (P < 0.01) concentration-dependent reduction in cell viability or increase in cell death. Sodium nitroprusside induced ERK1/2 phosphorylation, and the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MEK1/2) inhibitor PD 98059 significantly increased cell death. In contrast, SB202190, a relatively selective inhibitor of p38 MAPK, did not affect SNP-induced cell death. The cardioprotective effect of NO was prbably mediated in part via cGMP because 1H-[1,2,4]oxadiazolo[4,3-a]quinoxalin-1-one, a selective inhibitor of NO-sensitive guanylyl cyclase, produced a significant enhancement of SNP-induced cell death. In contrast, the PKG inhibitor KT5823 did not affect cell viability. In summary, these data suggest that NO, via stimulation of soluble guanylyl cyclase, activates MEK1/2 whose product, ERK1/2, protects against cell death. In contrast, SNP-induced p38 MAPK activation does not modulate NO-induced cardiomyocyte cell death. Not all cGMP targets affect NO-induced cell death, since the PKG pathway does not enhance or suppress NO-induced cardiomyocyte cell death. Enhancement of the ERK1/2 responses to NO may permit the beneficial effects of NO to predominate.

publication date

  • July 1, 2008

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