Exhaled and plasma nitrite: a comparative study among healthy, cirrhotic and liver transplant patients

Arq Gastroenterol. 2014 Jan-Mar;51(1):16-20. doi: 10.1590/s0004-28032014000100004.


Context: There is a relative lack of studies about exhaled nitrite (NO2-) concentrations in cirrhotic and transplanted patients.

Objective: Verify possible differences and correlations between the levels of NO2-, measured in plasma and exhaled breath condensate collected from patients with cirrhosis and liver transplant.

Method: Sixty adult male patients, aged between 27 and 67 years, were subdivided into three groups: a control group comprised of 15 healthy volunteers, a cirrhosis group composed of 15 volunteers, and a transplant group comprised of 30 volunteers. The NO2- concentrations were measured by chemiluminescence.

Results: 1) The analysis of plasma NO2- held among the three groups showed no statistical significance. 2) The comparison between cirrhotic and control groups, control and transplanted and cirrhotic and transplanted was not statistically significant. 3) The measurements performed on of NO2- exhaled breath condensate among the three groups showed no statistical difference. 4) When comparing the control group samples and cirrhotic, control and transplanted and cirrhotic and transplanted, there was no significant changes in the concentrations of NO2-.

Conclusion: No correlations were found between plasma and exhaled NO2-, suggesting that the exhaled NO2- is more reflective of local respiratory NO release than the systemic circulation.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Biomarkers / analysis
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Breath Tests / methods*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Exhalation
  • Humans
  • Liver Cirrhosis / metabolism*
  • Liver Transplantation*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nitric Oxide / metabolism*
  • Nitrites / analysis*
  • Nitrites / blood


  • Biomarkers
  • Nitrites
  • Nitric Oxide