NF-κB that plays an important role in iNOS expression is one of the targets of various potential anti-inflammatory agents including resveratrol. Resveratrol contains a structural similarity with estrogen, and there has been speculation about resveratrol as estrogen agonist. In this study, the mechanism and structural requirements of resveratrol and related hydroxystilbenes for the inhibition of LPS-induced nitric oxide production were studied in macrophage cells (RAW 264.7 and J774) by comparing its effect on LPS-induced NF-κB translocation and nitric oxide production, and by considering the possibility of involvement of an estrogen receptor. LPS-induced nitric oxide production was inhibited only when cells were treated with resveratrol prior to stimulation with LPS, suggesting that resveratrol does not affect the enzyme itself. A higher concentration of resveratrol than needed for the inhibition of nitric oxide production was required for the inhibition of NF-κB mobilization or iNOS expression. Estrogen and diethylstilbesterol, an estrogen agonist, caused only weak inhibition of nitric oxide production, and the effects of resveratrol were not noticeably blocked by ICI-182780, an estrogen antagonist. Structure-activity analysis of resveratrol and nine hydroxystilbenes suggests that the structural balance between oxygen functional groups on the benzene rings is important for their activity. Our results suggest that resveratrol might act on other cellular targets as well as NF-κB at the initial stage of gene expression. Unique structural features of hydroxystilbenes are needed for suppression of nitric oxide production and it is unlikely that estrogen receptor is involved in it.
- Estrogen receptor
- Nitric oxide
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)