10.1002/jcp.1041590209.abs The presence of nitric oxide synthase (NOS) in the retina, the constitutive isoform in photoreceptor outer segments and the inducible form in retinal pigmented epithelial (RPE) cells, has been demonstrated, but the role of the free radical NO produced, remains unknown. We have investigated the effect of NO on the process of rod outer segment (ROS) phagocytosis. Using an in vitro assay for phagocytosis in primary cultures of bovine RPE cells, we demonstrate that NO released by SIN‐1 (3‐morpholinosydnonimine) in the culture medium inhibits the phagocytosis of ROS. Furthermore, endogenous NO, produced by RPE cells cotreated with lipopolysaccharide (LPS) and interferon‐γ (IFN‐γ), is also able to decrease RPE cell phagocytic activity. This effect depends upon the continuous presence of NO during the assay and is abolished by the scavenging of NO by hemoglobin or by the inhibition of NO synthase activity by L‐arginine analog, NG‐monomethyl‐L‐arginine. Pretreatment of ROS with SIN‐1 failed to impair subsequent phagocytosis, demonstrating that NO directly affects the RPE cells ability to phagocytose ROS. The inhibitory effect of NO is cGMP independent, since 8‐bromo‐cGMP does not modify this process. This decrease of ROS phagocytosis by RPE cells caused by NO may occur as a result of retinal inflammation, and could lead to photoreceptor degeneration. © 1994 wiley‐Liss, Inc.
Journal of Cellular Physiology – Wiley
Published: May 1, 1994
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