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Nitric oxide production: An easily measurable condition index for vertebrates

Sild, Elin LU and Hõrak, P. (2009) In Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 63(6). p.959-966
Abstract
Nitric oxide (NO) is a multifunctional signalling molecule, acting as a vasodilator, neurotransmitter, and modulator of inflammatory processes. It also participates in killing parasites, virus-infected cells, and tumor cells by formation of peroxynitrite, one of the most important initiators of the free radical damage. Uncontrolled production of NO can lead to nitrosative stress, causing damages to proteins and DNA and cell injury and death. Determination of NO production in animals is potentially informative for description of individual variation in physiological condition, health state, and work load; however, it's potential in ecophysiological research has remained almost totally unexplored. Here, we describe application of a simple,... (More)
Nitric oxide (NO) is a multifunctional signalling molecule, acting as a vasodilator, neurotransmitter, and modulator of inflammatory processes. It also participates in killing parasites, virus-infected cells, and tumor cells by formation of peroxynitrite, one of the most important initiators of the free radical damage. Uncontrolled production of NO can lead to nitrosative stress, causing damages to proteins and DNA and cell injury and death. Determination of NO production in animals is potentially informative for description of individual variation in physiological condition, health state, and work load; however, it's potential in ecophysiological research has remained almost totally unexplored. Here, we describe application of a simple, precise, and inexpensive spectrophotometric assay for determination of NO production from 5 to 10 μL plasma samples of passerine birds. The method is based on estimation of concentrations of nitrate and nitrite-the stable end products of nitric oxide oxidation. The principle of the assay is reduction of nitrate to nitrite by copper-coated cadmium granules, followed by color development with Griess reagent. NO production in captive greenfinches (Carduelis chloris L.) was significantly repeatable over 6-day period (r=0.35). Injection of an inflammatory agent phytohemagglutinin into wing web resulted in 21% higher levels of NO production at the third day after treatment as compared to saline-injected birds. These findings, consistently with further evidence from veterinary and biomedical literature, suggest that measuring NO production appears an efficient and robust tool for monitoring individual condition and assessment of the magnitude of innate immune response, pathogenicity of infections, and physical effort. We propose that this assay, which is easily applicable in field studies, has an excellent potential in ecophysiological research, particularly in the rapidly developing fields of immunoecology and conservation physiology. © 2009 Springer-Verlag. (Less)
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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Avian physiology, Griess reaction, Immunoecology, Nitric oxide, Oxidative stress
in
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
volume
63
issue
6
pages
959 - 966
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • scopus:63149191960
ISSN
1432-0762
DOI
10.1007/s00265-009-0710-0
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
f5ecaf53-730d-4494-8a8b-1089ca21ceb6 (old id 3359238)
date added to LUP
2013-01-15 16:28:57
date last changed
2017-10-29 03:30:00
@article{f5ecaf53-730d-4494-8a8b-1089ca21ceb6,
  abstract     = {Nitric oxide (NO) is a multifunctional signalling molecule, acting as a vasodilator, neurotransmitter, and modulator of inflammatory processes. It also participates in killing parasites, virus-infected cells, and tumor cells by formation of peroxynitrite, one of the most important initiators of the free radical damage. Uncontrolled production of NO can lead to nitrosative stress, causing damages to proteins and DNA and cell injury and death. Determination of NO production in animals is potentially informative for description of individual variation in physiological condition, health state, and work load; however, it's potential in ecophysiological research has remained almost totally unexplored. Here, we describe application of a simple, precise, and inexpensive spectrophotometric assay for determination of NO production from 5 to 10 μL plasma samples of passerine birds. The method is based on estimation of concentrations of nitrate and nitrite-the stable end products of nitric oxide oxidation. The principle of the assay is reduction of nitrate to nitrite by copper-coated cadmium granules, followed by color development with Griess reagent. NO production in captive greenfinches (Carduelis chloris L.) was significantly repeatable over 6-day period (r=0.35). Injection of an inflammatory agent phytohemagglutinin into wing web resulted in 21% higher levels of NO production at the third day after treatment as compared to saline-injected birds. These findings, consistently with further evidence from veterinary and biomedical literature, suggest that measuring NO production appears an efficient and robust tool for monitoring individual condition and assessment of the magnitude of innate immune response, pathogenicity of infections, and physical effort. We propose that this assay, which is easily applicable in field studies, has an excellent potential in ecophysiological research, particularly in the rapidly developing fields of immunoecology and conservation physiology. © 2009 Springer-Verlag.},
  author       = {Sild, Elin and Hõrak, P.},
  issn         = {1432-0762},
  keyword      = {Avian physiology,Griess reaction,Immunoecology,Nitric oxide,Oxidative stress},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {6},
  pages        = {959--966},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology},
  title        = {Nitric oxide production: An easily measurable condition index for vertebrates},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00265-009-0710-0},
  volume       = {63},
  year         = {2009},
}