Nitric Oxide is a simple molecule, made up of one part nitrogen and one part oxygen. Scientists and researchers around the globe have been astonished by the seemingly limitless list of the functions of Nitric Oxide in the body. â€śIn my 25 years of research, I have never seen a molecule that so pervasively influences normal and abnormal body functions,â€ť said Dr. Solomon Snyder, the director of neuroscience at Johns Hopkins Medical School.
Despite the significance of this molecule, Nitric Oxide is relatively unknown outside the medical research community. Nitric Oxide is a highly reactive gas that is naturally produced in the human body. Nitric Oxide is the most important signaling molecule in the body. It affects a wide range of physiological functions including circulation, inflammation, learning and memory, digestion, penile erection, and oxygen release in tissues from red blood cells. It plays a significant role in many important chemical reactions. Sadly, most people are deficient in the natural production of Nitric Oxide required to maintain optimal health. With todayâ€™s fast-paced lifestyle and factors like lack of exercise, poor diet, soil mineral depletion, cigarette smoke, and other air pollutants, the need for higher levels of Nitric Oxide in humans is of critical importance.
Scientifically speaking, Nitric Oxide can be produced in the body through the process of converting L-arginine (one of the 20 amino acids) into citrulline. However, more and more research suggests that L-arginine has potentially negative side effects. Additionally, many co-factors are required to convert L-arginine into Nitric Oxide. Alternatively, Nitric Oxide can be produced more efficiently from substances know as nitrates and nitrites found in plants like Morinda Citrofolia (noni).
During 1999 and 2000, Dr. Thomas Burke and his researchers at Integrated Systems Physiology, an independent lab in Denver, Colorado, conducted in vitro experiments. They tested diluted noni juice on endothelial cells, the cells that line the inner surface of blood vessels proving that noni fruit juice created Nitric Oxide! Their findings suddenly helped to explain the enormous benefits people were seeing from their consumption of noni juice.
In my 25 years of research, I have never seen a molecule [like Nitric Oxide] that so pervasively influences normal and abnormal body functions.â€ť -Dr. Solomon Snyder, Director of Neuroscience, John Hopkins Medical School
Additional Benefits of Nitric Oxide
Nitric Oxide positively affects nearly every system in the body, promoting better health and wellness. Well-documented as a vasodilator, Nitric Oxide expands the blood vessels, resulting in improved cardiovascular heath. But thatâ€™s just the beginning. Look at how many more ways Nitric Oxide can benefit the human bodyâ€¦
Fact: If you cut off the oxygen to the heart, the heart will suffer irreversible damage or cell death in 5-7 minutes. If you terminate nitric oxide, it takes only 10-15 seconds.
Studies on Nitric Oxide
McKnight, et al. â€śChemical Synthesis of Nitric Oxide in the stomach from dietary nitrate in humans.â€ť Gut. 1997 Feb; 40 (2):211-4.
GUO, et al. â€śIdentification of a plant Nitric Oxide synthase gene involved in hormonal signaling.â€ť Science, 2003 Oct 3; 302(5642):100-3.
Del Rio, L., Corpas, F. and Barrosos, J. â€śNitric Oxide and Nitric Oxide synthase activity in plants.â€ť Phytochemistry 2004 Apr; 65(7):783-92
Schaffer, et al. â€śNitric Oxide regulates wound healing.â€ť J Surg Res. 1996; 63: 237-240
Taubert, et al. â€śAspirin induces Nitric Oxide release from vascular endothelium: a novel mechanism of action.â€ť British Journal of Pharmacology 2004; 143: 159-165.
Hancock, C. and Riegger-Krugh, C. â€śModulation of pain in osteoarthritis: the role of nitric oxide.â€ť Clin J Pain. 2008 May;24(4):353-65.
Jeschonneck, et al. â€śAbnormal microcirculation and temperature in skin above tender points in patients with fibromyalgia.â€ť Rheumatology (Oxford). 2000; 39:917-921
Akerstrom, et al.,â€śNitric Oxide inhibits the replication cycle of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus.â€ť Center for Microbiological Preparedness, Swedish Institute for Infectious Disease Control. J Virol. 2005 Feb;79(3):1966-9.
Nitric oxide: From menace to marvel of the decade
Reproductive and Cardiovascular Disease Research Group
Arthritis Research & Therapy
UC Irvine researchers reveal structure of molecule that regulates blood pressure
The Building Blocks of Erection: Nitric Oxide . . . and More Nitric Oxide
Spiraling high blood pressure linked to Nitric Oxide deficiency
Nitric Oxide prevents blood vessel inflammation
Nitric oxide links bulk of sporadic and familial Parkinson's Disease
Study Points to Role of Nitric Oxide in New Treatments for Sickle Cell Anemia
Cortical feedback to the thalamus is selectively enhanced by nitric oxide.
Nitric Oxide Deficiency Raises Cardiovascular Disease Risk in African Americans
Study: Nitric Oxide Key to Brain 'Booting Up'
Heart Disease Risk Factor #1: Nitric Oxide
Nitric Oxide Converted in the Stomach
McKnight, G.M., et al., "Chemical synthesis of Nitric Oxide in the stomach from dietary nitrate in humans." Gut. 1997; 40: 211-4.
Nitric Oxide and the Blood
"Duke researchers discover central role of Nitric Oxide in hemoglobin action." Duke Medicine News and Communication. 3 Nov. 2004.
Gladwin, M., et al. â€śRole of circulating nitrite and S-nitrosohemoglobin in the regulation of regional blood flow in humans.â€ť Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2000 Oct. 10; 97(21): 11482-7.
Blood flow and Alzheimerâ€™s
Mazza, M., et al., â€śPrimary cerebral blood flow deficiency and Alzheimer's disease: shadows and lights.â€ť J Alzheimers Dis. 2011 Jan 1;23(3):375-89.
Health News Report â€śExercise and Vitamin D Help Prevent Falls in Seniors.â€ť 2010 Dec 23.
Nazrun, A.S., M. Norazlina, M. Norliza and S.I. Nirwana, 2011. Tocotrienols as an anti-osteoporotic agent: The progress so far. Int. J. Osteoporosis Metab. Disorders, 1: 1-14.
"Nitric oxide: novel therapy for osteoporosis." Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2008 Dec;9(17):3025-44.
Nitric Oxide and Recovery
Diwan, A., et al.â€śNitric Oxide modulates fracture healing.â€ť J Bone Miner Res. 2000 Feb;15(2):342-51.
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