Regulation of 6-Pyruvoyltetrahydropterin Synthase Activity and Messenger RNA Abundance in Human Vascular Endothelial Cells

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The nitric oxide synthase cofactor tetrahydrobiopterin (BH4) is involved in the regulation of endothelium-dependent vascular functions mediated by nitric oxide. Vascular endothelial cells synthesize and secrete large amounts of BH4 on cytokine activation. There is scant knowledge about molecular mechanisms of cytokine-triggered BH4 production in endothelial cells.


The present study demonstrates for the first time the cytokine-dependent regulation of PTPS, the second enzyme in BH4 synthesis. Although GTPCH is believed to be the rate-limiting step, control of endothelial PTPS expression by cytokines may play an important role in regulating BH4-dependent nitric oxide production in the vascular system. (Circulation. 1998;98:1703-1706.)

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