Experimental biology and medicine (Maywood, N.J.)

Reactive nitrogen species in cellular signaling.

PMID 25888647


The transduction of cellular signals occurs through the modification of target molecules. Most of these modifications are transitory, thus the signal transduction pathways can be tightly regulated. Reactive nitrogen species are a group of compounds with different properties and reactivity. Some reactive nitrogen species are highly reactive and their interaction with macromolecules can lead to permanent modifications, which suggested they were lacking the specificity needed to participate in cell signaling events. However, the perception of reactive nitrogen species as oxidizers of macromolecules leading to general oxidative damage has recently evolved. The concept of redox signaling is now well established for a number of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species. In this context, the post-translational modifications introduced by reactive nitrogen species can be very specific and are active participants in signal transduction pathways. This review addresses the role of these oxidative modifications in the regulation of cell signaling events.