Three members of the nitric oxide synthase II gene family (NOS2A, NOS2B, and NOS2C) colocalize to human chromosome 17.

PMID 7558036


Nitric oxide synthases (NOSs) are a family of enzymes responsible for the synthesis of nitric oxide from L-arginine and molecular oxygen. Three human NOS enzymes (I, II, and III) with differing cellular distribution and regulatory mechanisms have been identified. To determine whether additional NOSs are encoded in the human genome, a bovine NOS II-related cDNA was used to screen two human genomic libraries. Clones containing three independent genes were isolated. One clone encoded the previously identified NOS II gene (NOS2A). The two other genes specified amino acids homologous, but not identical, to human NOS II (NOS2B and NOS2C). Southern blot hybridization demonstrated that all three genes are present in the human genome. DNA from human-mouse somatic cell hybrids were used to determine the chromosomal location of the NOS II-related genes. All three NOS II-related genes colocalized to human chromosome 17 between bands p13.1 and q25. These observations suggest that there is more than one NOS II-related gene in the human genome. This finding may have important implications for the design of NOS isoform-specific inhibitors.