Suppression of acute experimental colitis by a highly selective inducible nitric-oxide synthase inhibitor, N-[3-(aminomethyl)benzyl]acetamidine

E Kankuri, K Vaali, R G Knowles, M Lähde, R Korpela, H Vapaatalo, E Moilanen
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 2001, 298 (3): 1128-32
High concentrations of nitric oxide (NO) produced by the inducible nitric-oxide synthase (iNOS) are associated with ulcerative inflammation and disease activity in colitis. Therefore, inhibition of iNOS serves as a novel experimental approach to treat gut inflammation. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of a novel highly selective iNOS inhibitor, N-[3-(aminomethyl)benzyl]acetamidine (1400W), as compared with a nonselective NOS inhibitor, N(G)-nitro-L-arginine-methyl-ester (L-NAME), in 2,4,6-trinitrobenzenesulfonic acid (TNBS)-induced acute colitis in the rat. Increased expression of iNOS protein and mRNA was found in acute TNBS-induced colitis along with neutrophil infiltration, inflammatory edema, and tissue damage. In a 24-h model of acute colitis, subcutaneous injections of 1400W (5 or 10 mg/kg t.i.d.) produced a 56 and 95% reduction in inflammatory edema formation, a 68 and 63% reduction in neutrophil infiltration (measured as myeloperoxidase activity), and a 19 and 26% decrease in the size of mucosal lesions as compared with vehicle treatment. Administration of L-NAME (35 mg/kg) failed to produce any significant beneficial effects as compared with vehicle treatment in this experimental model of acute colitis. Treatment with 1400W, a highly selective inhibitor of iNOS, reduced formation of edema, neutrophil infiltration, and macroscopic inflammatory damage in experimentally induced acute colitis in the rat. In contrast, nonselective nitric-oxide synthase inhibition with L-NAME provided no benefit. These results support the idea that selective iNOS inhibitors have a promise in the treatment of colitis.

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