There is increasing interest in the possible therapeutic benefits of the gasotransmitter
hydrogen sulfide (H2S; sulfide), and drugs which release sulfide are currently being evaluated in both
preclinical and clinical studies as treatments for conditions ranging from cancer to cardiovascular
disease to inflammation. Sulfide is generally considered to act as a vasodilator, and it is therefore not
surprising that the effects of sulfide donors on both systemic and pulmonary hypertension are being
examined. In this review, we provide a critical evaluation of both the evidence that H2S may be of
benefit in treating systemic and pulmonary hypertension, and of current hypotheses regarding the
cellular mechanisms underlying sulfide’s effects on the systemic and pulmonary vascular systems.
Keywords: Cystathionine γ lyase, endothelium derived hyperpolarization, hydrogen sulfide, hypertension, nitric oxide,
pulmonary hypertension, sulfhydration.
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