Cyclosporin inhibits nitric oxide production in medullary ascending limb cultured cells

Mai Szu Wu, Chih Wei Yang, Marcelle Bens, Hsiao Mei Yu, Jeng Yi Huang, Chin Herng Wu, Chiu Ching Huang, Alain Vandewalle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Citations (Scopus)


Background. Nitric oxide (NO) has been shown to play a role in cyclosporin (CsA) nephrotoxicity, but its mechanism of action is still unclear. As inducible NO synthase (iNOS) mRNA has been found to be expressed in rat medullary thick ascending limb (mTAL) cells, we investigated the effects of CsA on NO production in a model of mouse cultured mTAL cells. Materials and methods. The experiments were carried out on sub-cultured cells derived from isolated mTAL microdissected from the kidney of C57BL/6 mice. The identification of the iNOS mRNA in mTAL microdissected segment and cultured cell was confirmed by RT-PCR and RsaI digestion. Nitrite (NO2-) released by mTAL cells was determined using the modified Griess reagent method and taken as an index of nitric oxide production. The cultured cells were treated with various concentrations of CsA and different signal transduction regulators to assess the effect and possible pathway(s) of action of CsA on NO production in mTAL cells. Results. The basal production of NO by mTAL cells increased by 1.8-fold following incubation with bacterial lipopolysaccaride (LPS). Both aminoguanidine and L-NAME inhibited NO production. CsA (10-300 ng/ml) also inhibited NO production in a dose-dependent manner and prevented its increase induced by LPS. Phorbol 12-myristate 13-acetate (PMA), a PKC stimulator, enhanced slightly the production of NO under basal conditions and prevented the inhibitory action of CsA on NO production. These results suggest that the NO secreted by mouse cultured mTAL cells is dependent on the PKC pathway. Conclusion. These results show that CsA may downregulate the production of NO by cultured mTAL cells expressing iNOS mRNA and that the PKC pathway is involved in this process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2814-2820
Number of pages7
JournalNephrology Dialysis Transplantation
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Cultured cells
  • Cyclosporin
  • Kidney
  • Nephrotoxicity
  • Nitric oxide
  • Thick ascending limbs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nephrology
  • Transplantation


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