The idea that nitric oxide gas, known from undergraduate chemistry to be a toxic by-product of car exhausts and cigarettes, and the scourge of anaesthetists as a contaminant of nitrous oxide cylinders, could be a biological mediator, was unthinkable 15 years ago. However, in 1987, it was shown that the elusive endothelium-derived relaxing factor was indeed nitric oxide, produced by mammalian cells, with roles in blood pressure regulation, neurotransmission, immunity and cardiovascular function.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine
- Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine