Hypochlorite and superoxide radicals can act synergistically to induce fragmentation of hyaluronan and chondroitin sulphates

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Activated phagocytes release the haem enzyme MPO (myeloperoxidase) and also generate superoxide radicals (O2*-), and hence H2O2, via an oxidative burst. Reaction of MPO with H2O2 in the presence of chloride ions generates HOCl (the physiological mixture of hypochlorous acid and its anion present at pH 7.4). Exposure of glycosaminoglycans to a MPO-H2O2-Cl- system or reagent HOCl generates long-lived chloramides [R-NCl-C(O)-R'] derived from the glycosamine N-acetyl functions. Decomposition of these species by transition metal ions gives polymer-derived amidyl (nitrogen-centred) radicals [R-N*-C(O)-R'], polymer-derived carbon-centred radicals and site-specific strand scission. In the present study, we have shown that exposure of glycosaminoglycan chloramides to O2*- also promotes chloramide decomposition and glycosaminoglycan fragmentation. These processes are inhibited by superoxide dismutase, metal ion chelators and the metal ion-binding protein BSA, consistent with chloramide decomposition and polymer fragmentation occurring via O2*--dependent one-electron reduction, possibly catalysed by trace metal ions. Polymer fragmentation induced by O2*- [generated by the superoxide thermal source 1, di-(4-carboxybenzyl)hyponitrite] was demonstrated to be entirely chloramide dependent as no fragmentation occurred with the native polymers or when the chloramides were quenched by prior treatment with methionine. EPR spin-trapping experiments using 5,5-dimethyl1-pyrroline-N-oxide and 2-methyl-2-nitrosopropane have provided evidence for both O2*- and polymer-derived carbon-centred radicals as intermediates. The results obtained are consistent with a mechanism involving one-electron reduction of the chloramides to yield polymer-derived amidyl radicals, which subsequently undergo intramolecular hydrogen atom abstraction reactions to give carbon-centred radicals. The latter undergo fragmentation reactions in a site-specific manner. This synergistic damage to glycosaminoglycans induced by HOCl and O2*- may be of significance at sites of inflammation where both oxidants are generated concurrently.

Original languageEnglish
JournalBiochemical Journal
Issue numberPt 1
Pages (from-to)175-84
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2004

    Research areas

  • Carbohydrate Sequence, Chloramines, Chondroitin Sulfates, Drug Synergism, Electron Spin Resonance Spectroscopy, Glycosaminoglycans, Hyaluronic Acid, Hypochlorous Acid, Spin Trapping, Superoxides

ID: 138273876