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Nitric oxide quenches the fire in heart mitochondria

During resuscitation after cardiac arrest, a burst of reactive oxygen species (ROS) generated in mitochondria triggers a lethal cascade of events. Nitric oxide is known to be protective, but the mechanism is unknown. A new study shows that a mitochondria-targeted nitric oxide donor S-nitrosates the ND3 subunit of mitochondrial complex I, limiting its ability to generate ROS and protecting the heart against injury (pages 753–759).

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Figure 1: A new mechanism to explain how nitric oxide (NO) protects the heart from ischemia-reperfusion injury.

Katie Vicari

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Correspondence to Paul T Schumacker.

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Schumacker, P. Nitric oxide quenches the fire in heart mitochondria. Nat Med 19, 666–667 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1038/nm.3224

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