Although an excess of reactive oxygen species (ROS) can damage the vasculature, low concentrations of ROS mediate intracellular signal transduction pathways. We hypothesized that hydrogen peroxide plays a beneficial role in the vasculature by inhibiting endothelial exocytosis that would otherwise induce vascular inflammation and thrombosis. We now show that endogenous H 2O2 inhibits thrombin-induced exocytosis of granules from endothelial cells. H2O2 regulates exocytosis by inhibiting N-ethylmaleimide sensitive factor (NSF), a protein that regulates membrane fusion events necessary for exocytosis. H2O2 decreases the ability of NSF to hydrolyze adenosine triphosphate and to disassemble the soluble NSF attachment protein receptor complex. Mutation of NSF cysteine residue C264T eliminates the sensitivity of NSF to H2O2, suggesting that this cysteine residue is a redox sensor for NSF. Increasing endogenous H2O2 levels in mice decreases exocytosis and platelet rolling on venules in vivo. By inhibiting endothelial cell exocytosis, endogenous H2O2 may protect the vasculature from inflammation and thrombosis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology