Serum and cerebrospinal fluid nitrite/nitrate levels in patients with rotavirus gastroenteritis induced convulsion

Life Sci. 2004 Jan 30;74(11):1397-405. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2003.08.014.


Nitric oxide (NO) is a highly reactive free radical that is involved in a variety of different biological process. In recent reports, the putative role of NO in the neuropathogenesis of brain inflammation has been demonstrated. And then the relation between neuronal NO and convulsive seizures induced by virus has been suggested. However, there are few reports about NO in vivo under viral neurological infections. In order to evaluate the relation between NO production and neurological disorders induced by viral infection, sixty-six cases including 11 patients with rotavirus gastroenteritis admitted for convulsions were examined in this study. NO metabolites (NOx) levels in both serum and cerebrospinal fluid obtained from rotavirus gastroenteritis patients with convulsion were much higher than in those of patients with purulent meningitis, encephalitis, febrile convulsion or in the control group. There was a relative correlation between IL-6 and NOx in some cases. These results indicated that NO may have a pathophysiological role in convulsions associated by rotavirus infection either through indirect or direct effects of NO. Consequently, NOx inhibitors might be helpful for the treatment of rotavirus encephalopathy.

MeSH terms

  • Child, Preschool
  • Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
  • Female
  • Gastroenteritis / complications*
  • Gastroenteritis / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Immunoenzyme Techniques
  • Infant
  • Interleukin-6 / blood
  • Luminescent Measurements
  • Male
  • Nitrates / blood
  • Nitrates / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Nitrates / metabolism*
  • Nitrites / blood
  • Nitrites / cerebrospinal fluid
  • Nitrites / metabolism*
  • Rotavirus Infections / complications*
  • Rotavirus Infections / metabolism*
  • Seizures / etiology*
  • Seizures / metabolism*
  • Spectrophotometry, Ultraviolet


  • Interleukin-6
  • Nitrates
  • Nitrites