Neuronal nitric oxide synthase (NOS), an enzyme capable of synthesizing nitric oxide, appears to be identical to neuronal NADPH diaphorase. The correlation was examined between NOS immunoreactivity and NADPH diaphorase staining in neurons of the ileum and colon of the guinea-pig. There was a one-to-one correlation between NOS immunoreactivity and NADPH diaphorase staining in all neurons examined; even the relative staining intensities obtained were similar with each technique. To determine whether pharmacological methods could be employed to demonstrate that NADPH diaphorase staining was due to the presence of NOS, tissue was pre-treated with NG-nitro-l-arginine, a NOS inhibitor, or l-arginine, a natural substrate of NOS. In these experiments on unfixed tissue, it was necessary to use dimethyl thiazolyl tetrazolium instead of nitroblue tetrazolium as the substrate for the NADPH diaphorase histochemical reaction. Neither treatment caused a significant decrease in the level of NADPH diaphorase staining, implying that arginine and NADPH interact at different sites on the enzyme.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)