Effect of inhibition of inducible nitric oxide synthase and guanylyl cyclase on endotoxin-induced delay in gastric emptying and intestinal transit in mice

Shock. 2002 Aug;18(2):125-31. doi: 10.1097/00024382-200208000-00006.


Nitric oxide (NO) is postulated to play a role in endotoxin-induced ileus. We investigated the effect of selective blockade of inducible NO synthase (iNOS) and guanylyl cyclase on endotoxin-induced ileus in mice. Thirty minutes before injection of lipopolysaccharides (LPS), mice were pretreated with L-NAME (N omega-nitro-L-arginine methyl ester, non-selective NOS inhibitor), 1400W (N-(3-(aminomethyl)benzyl)acetamide, selective iNOS inhibitor), ODQ (1H-(1,2,4)oxadiazolo(4,3-a)quinoxalin-1-one, guanylyl cyclase inhibitor), dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO, vehicle), or dexamethasone. After 18 h, general well being deteriorated and the mice developed hypothermia and a significant delay in gastric emptying and intestinal transit as measured by Evans blue. 1400W completely reversed the endotoxin-induced delay in gastric emptying, while L-NAME did not have these beneficial effects. On the contrary, even in control mice, L-NAME delayed gastric emptying. Dexamethasone, DMSO, and ODQ mimicked the effect of 1400W on endotoxin-induced delay in gastric emptying. The endotoxin-induced delay in transit was significantly improved only by 1400W. None of the drugs reversed the hypothermia. In LPS mice treated with L-NAME, the behavior scale increased even further, while it decreased after treatment with 1400W. In conclusion, selective inhibition of iNOS reverses the endotoxin-induced delay in gastric emptying and transit and improves general well being. The pathway used by NO, derived from iNOS, may involve inhibition of guanylyl cyclase or radical scavenging.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dexamethasone / pharmacology*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Endotoxins
  • Female
  • Gastric Emptying / drug effects*
  • Gastric Emptying / physiology
  • Gastrointestinal Transit / drug effects*
  • Gastrointestinal Transit / physiology
  • Guanylate Cyclase / drug effects*
  • Guanylate Cyclase / metabolism
  • Intestinal Obstruction / enzymology*
  • Intestinal Obstruction / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Mice
  • NG-Nitroarginine Methyl Ester / pharmacology*
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase / drug effects*
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase / metabolism
  • Reference Values
  • Sensitivity and Specificity


  • Endotoxins
  • Dexamethasone
  • Nitric Oxide Synthase
  • Guanylate Cyclase
  • NG-Nitroarginine Methyl Ester