Localization of heme oxygenase-2 and modulation of cGMP levels by carbon monoxide and/or nitric oxide in the retina.Vis Neurosci. 2000 May-Jun; 17(3):319-29.VN
Heme oxygenase-2 (HO-2) synthesizes carbon monoxide (CO), a modulator of soluble guanylate cyclase (sGC). To examine this signal transduction pathway in the retina, we immunocytochemically localized HO-2, and investigated the effects of CO on cGMP levels. In turtle, HO-2-like immunoreactivity (-LI) was in all photoreceptors, some amacrine cells, and in numerous bipolar and ganglion cells. HO-2-LI colocalized with sGC activity in many cells. In rat, HO-LI was found only in the inner retina, in ganglion and amacrine cells. In turtle, stimulation with CO alone primarily increased cGMP-LI in bipolar cells in the visual streak. Stimulation with a combination of CO and nitric oxide (NO) dramatically increased cGMP-LI throughout the retina, in comparison to the smaller increases seen with NO or CO alone. These data suggest that CO is an endogenous modulator of the sGC/cGMP signaling pathway in many retinal neurons, and can dramatically amplify NO-stimulated increases in cGMP.