Reactive oxygen species and signal transduction

IUBMB Life. 2001 Jul;52(1-2):3-6. doi: 10.1080/15216540252774694.


Increasing evidence suggests a role for intracellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) as mediators of normal and pathological signal transduction pathways. In particular, a growing list of recent reports have demonstrated a rapid and significant increases in intracellular ROS following growth factor or cytokine stimulation. These ROS appear essential for a host of downstream signaling events. Biochemical characterization of this ligand-activated ROS production has revealed important information regarding the molecular composition of the cellular oxidases and the regulation of their activity by small GTPases. Work is proceeding on identifying strategies to identify how ROS might specifically regulate signaling pathways by altering the activity of direct target molecules. This review will focus on the progress in the rapid emerging area of oxidant or redox-dependent signal transduction and speculate how these insights might alter our view and treatment of diseases thought to be caused by oxidative stress.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • GTP Phosphohydrolases / metabolism
  • Growth Substances / pharmacology
  • Oxidants / metabolism
  • Oxidation-Reduction / drug effects
  • Oxidative Stress / drug effects
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction* / drug effects


  • Growth Substances
  • Oxidants
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • GTP Phosphohydrolases