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The Pivotal Role of Nitric Oxide: Effects on the Nervous and Immune Systems

Author(s): Celia Banuls, Milagros Rocha, Susana Rovira-Llopis, Rosa Falcon, Raquel Castello, Jose R. Herance, Miriam Polo, Ana Blas-Garcia, Antonio Hernandez-Mijares, Victor M. Victor.


Nitric oxide (NO) has an important role in physiological and pathological processes in general, and in particular plays a homeostatic role in the nervous and immune systems. The many different physiological functions of NO include those of a mediator of blood vessel dilation, neurotransmitter, neuromodulator and inductor of mitochondrial biogenesis. In addition, NO can transform into highly reactive and harmful molecules producing an impairment of the DNA, lipids or proteins, and thus altering their function. This dual action of NO, by which it plays an important role in homeostasis and aids the development of pathological processes, makes this molecule an interesting target for medical therapies, especially with respect to the nervous and immune systems. This review describes the multiple roles of NO played out in the nervous and immune systems during different physiological and pathophysiological processes.

Keywords: Nitric oxide, Mitochondria, Immune system, Leukocyte, Nervous system.

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Article Details

Year: 2014
Page: [4679 - 4689]
Pages: 11
DOI: 10.2174/1381612820666140130213510
Price: $58