Frontiers in Bioscience-Scholar (FBS) is published by IMR Press from Volume 13 Issue 1 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.
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Academic Editor: Nan-Shan Chang
NADPH oxidase, a source of superoxide anion (.O2- ), can be stimulated by oxidized low-density lipoprotein (OxLDL). We examined whether tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) could reduce OxLDL-induced .O2- production by NADPH oxidase, increasing nitric oxide (NO) synthesis. Endothelial cells incubated with OxLDL produced more .O2- (35-67%) than untreated cells, with the highest increase 1 hour after OxLDL addition. The elevated .O2- production correlated with the translocation of the p47phox subunit of NADPH oxidase from the cytosol to the membrane. Cells exhibited a marked decrease in both BH4 (83 per cent) and NO (54 per cent) in the same hour following exposure to OxLDL. An NADPH oxidase inhibitor, apocynin, or antioxidant, N-acetyl-L-cysteine, substantially attenuated the reduction in both BH4 and NO. The .O2- production was increased when cells were pretreated with an inhibitor of BH4 synthesis and decreased following pretreatment with a BH4 precursor, suggesting that NADPH oxidase-induced imbalance of endothelial NO and .O2- production can be modulated by BH4 concentrations. BH4 may be critical in combating oxidative stress, restoring proper redox state, and reducing risk for cardiovascular disease including atherosclerosis.