Oxidative modification of neurogranin by nitric oxide: an amperometric study

Bioelectrochemistry. 2000 Jun;51(2):163-73. doi: 10.1016/s0302-4598(00)00062-3.


Neurogranin (Ng) is a neuron-specific protein kinase C (PKC) substrate, which contains four cysteine (Cys) residues. Recently, it has been shown that Ng is a redox-sensitive protein and is a likely target of nitric oxide (NO) and other oxidants [F.-S. Sheu, C.W. Mahoney, K. Seki, K.-P. Huang, Nitric oxide modification of rat brain neurogranin affects its phosphorylation by protein kinase C and affinity for calmodulin, J. Biol. Chem. 271 (1996) 22407-22413: J. Li, J.H. Pak, F.L. Huang, K.-P. Huang, N-methyl-D-aspartate induces neurogranin/RC3 oxidation in rat brain slices, J. Biol. Chem. 274 (1999) 1294-1300]. In this study, we directly examine the redox reactions between dissolved NO and Cys as well as between NO and bacterial expressed Ng in its reduced form, at concentrations approximate to the physiological levels in phosphate buffer solution (PBS) under aerobic conditions. The reaction kinetics are measured directly by our newly developed electrochemical sensor. Our sensor is based on the chemical modification of electrode with immobilized nanoparticles of transition metal palladium (Pd) which serves as catalytic centers for the electrochemical oxidation of thiol and NO selectively and quantitatively at different potentials. It detects Cys and Ng in a linear range from nano to micromolar concentration at + 450 mV, vs. a saturated calomel reference electrode (SCE), while the detection of NO at the sensor can be optimally achieved at + 700 mV (vs. SCE) with a linear current-to-concentration range of nM to microM. It thus provides a selective control to monitor two reactants independently. With this sensor as a detector, we found that (1) the oxidation of either Cys or Ng by NO is a fast reaction which reaches a near completion within 1-2 min at its physiological concentration; and (2) after the completion of reaction, NO is mostly, if not all, regenerated, an observation consistent with the reaction mechanism involving the formation of S-nitrosothiol as an intermediate. The reaction kinetics of both NO to Cys and NO to Ng implies that NO can achieve local action on cellular proteins in addition to its effect on targets located in neighboring cells via concentration-gradient-dependent diffusion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Calmodulin-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Calmodulin-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Cysteine / metabolism
  • DNA Primers
  • Electrochemistry
  • Kinetics
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / metabolism*
  • Neurogranin
  • Nitric Oxide / metabolism*
  • Oxidation-Reduction
  • Rats
  • Recombinant Proteins / genetics
  • Recombinant Proteins / metabolism


  • Calmodulin-Binding Proteins
  • DNA Primers
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Nrgn protein, rat
  • Recombinant Proteins
  • Neurogranin
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Cysteine