Investigations into the role of sulfhydryl groups in the mechanism of action of the nitrates.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

The mechanism by which nitroglycerin (GTN) initiates relaxation in vascular smooth muscle is not known. According to one hypothesis a specific nitrate receptor exists with a key sulfhydryl (SH) group in the active site. The current study was performed with sulfhydryl reagents in helical strips of the canine medial saphenous vein from 20 dogs to examine the role of the SH group in the action of GTN. The reagents used were 5,5'-dithiobis(2-nitrobenzoic acid) (DTNB) and p-chloromercuribenzoate (PCMB) which bind to and inactivate SH groups, and dithiothreitol (DTT), an SH reducing agent. It was anticipated that DTNB and PCMB would decrease the sensitivity to GTN while DTT might increase the sensitivity to GTN. Treatment of strips with PCMB and DTNB did not alter the dose-response curves for GTN. In contrast, following DTT treatment (1 x 10(-4)M) the maximum response to GTN (10(-5)M) was significantly reduced from 80.3% +/- 4.0 (SD) in control strips to 46.9% +/- 4.4 (SD) in the treated strips. These data suggest that relaxation induced by GTN in vascular smooth muscle occurs by a mechanism other than interaction with membrane SH groups.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Moffat, JA; Armstrong, PW; Marks, GS

Published Date

  • October 1, 1982

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 60 / 10

Start / End Page

  • 1261 - 1266

PubMed ID

  • 6816463

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0008-4212

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1139/y82-185


  • eng

Conference Location

  • Canada