Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > The role of brain gaseous neurotransmitters in ...


Text available via DOI:

View graph of relations

The role of brain gaseous neurotransmitters in anxiety

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>13/03/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Pharmacological reports : PR
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)357–371
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date13/03/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Although anxiety is perhaps one of the most significant current medical and social problems, the neurochemical mechanistic background of this common condition remains to be fully understood. Multifunctional regulatory gasotransmitters are novel, atypical inorganic factors of the brain that are involved in the mechanisms of anxiety responses. Nitric oxide (NO) signaling shows ambiguous action in animal models of anxiety, while NO donors exert anxiogenic or anxiolytic effect depending on their chemical structure, dose, treatment schedule and gas release rapidity. The majority of NO synthase inhibitors act as a relatively potent axiolytic agents, while hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and carbon monoxide (CO) delivered experimentally in the form of “slow” or “fast” releasing donors have recently been considered as anxiolytic neurotransmitters. In this comprehensive review we critically summarize the literature regarding the intriguing roles of NO, H2S and CO in the neuromolecular mechanisms of anxiety in the context of their putative, yet promising therapeutic application. A possible mechanism of gasotransmitter action at the level of anxiety-related synaptic transmission is also presented. Brain gasesous neuromediators urgently require further wide ranging studies to clarify their potential value for the current neuropharmacology of anxiety disorders.

Bibliographic note

The final publication is available at Springer via http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s43440-021-00242-2