Soluble guanylyl cyclase activation by HMR-1766 (ataciguat) in cells exposed to oxidative stress

Zongmin Zhou, Anastasia Pyriochou, Anastasia Kotanidou, Georgios Dalkas, Martin Van Eickels, Georgios Spyroulias, Charis Roussos, Andreas Papapetropoulos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


Many vascular diseases are characterized by increased levels of ROS that destroy the biological activity of nitric oxide and limit cGMP formation. In the present study, we investigated the cGMP-forming ability of HMR-1766 in cells exposed to oxidative stress. Pretreatment of smooth muscle cells with H 2O2 reduced cGMP production stimulated by sodium nitroprusside (SNP) or BAY 41-2272. However, pretreatment with H 2O2 significantly increased HMR-1766 responses. Similar results were obtained with SIN-1, menadione, and rotenone. In addition, HMR-1766 was more effective in stimulating heme-free sGC compared with the wild-type enzyme. Interestingly, in cells expressing heme-free sGC, H2O 2 inhibited instead of potentiated HMR-1766 responses, suggesting that the ROS-induced enhancement of cGMP formation was heme dependent. Moreover, using truncated forms of sGC, we observed that the NH2-terminus of the β1-subunit is required for the action of HMR-1766. Finally, to study tolerance development to HMR-1766, cells were pretreated with this sGC activator and reexposed to HMR-1766 or SNP. Results from these experiments demonstrated lack of tolerance development to HMR-1766 as well as lack of cross-tolerance with SNP. We conclude that HMR-1766 is an improved sGC activator as it has the ability to activate oxidized/heme-free sGC and is resistant to the development of tolerance; these observations make HMR-1766 a promising agent for treating diseases associated with increased vascular tone combined with enhanced ROS production.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)H1763-H1771
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Heart and Circulatory Physiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2008


  • Nitric oxide
  • Reactive oxygen species
  • Soluble guanylyl cyclase
  • cGMP

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine
  • Physiology (medical)


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