Biological & pharmaceutical bulletin

Development of a fluorescent indicator for the bioimaging of nitric oxide.

PMID 9448093


Nitric oxide (NO) has been reported to play various roles as a signal transmitter. However, detailed functions of NO have yet to be clarified. We have developed a fluorescent indicator for NO imaging in living cells. The N-nitrosation of newly designed and synthesized 4-((3-amino-2-naphthyl)aminomethyl)benzoic acid (DAN-1) by NO yielded the highly fluorescent triazole-form. The membrane permeable ester derivative of DAN-1 (DAN-1 EE) was applied to the imaging of NO produced in activated rat aortic smooth muscle cells. After DAN-1 EE has been loaded into cells, the ester bond is hydrolyzed by intracellular esterase, yielding original DAN-1 with less permeability. The fluorescence intensity of the cells loaded with DAN-1 EE increased according to NO production. The imaging method with fluorescent indicators will be significant for the functional clarification of NO in vivo.