Neurobiology of nitric oxide

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

241 Scopus citations


Nitric oxide is a ubiquitous and unique biological messenger molecule. It mediates blood vessel relaxation by endothelium, immune function of macrophages, and neurotransmission of central and peripheral nervous systems. Endothelial and neuronal nitric oxide synthases are constitutively expressed and activated by calcium entry into cells, whereas the macrophage nitric oxide synthase is inducible with new RNA and protein synthesis upon immune stimulation. Nitric oxide may play a role in the neurotransmitter release, neural development, synaptic plasticity, and regulation of gene expression. Excessive production of nitric oxide is neurotoxic and is implicated in a variety of neurological disorders.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-316
Number of pages26
JournalCritical reviews in neurobiology
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 1996


  • Endothelium derived relaxing factor
  • Neurological diseases
  • Neurotoxicity
  • Neurotransmission
  • Nitric oxide synthase

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Physiology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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