8-Nitroguanosine 3',5'-cyclic monophosphate (8-nitro-cGMP) is a unique derivative of guanosine 3',5'- cyclic monophosphate (cGMP) formed in mammalian and plant cells in response to production of nitric oxide and reactive oxygen species. 8-Nitro-cGMP possesses signaling activity inherited from parental cGMP, including induction of vasorelaxation through activation of cGMP-dependent protein kinase. On the other hand, 8-nitro-cGMP mediates cellular signaling that is not observed for native cGMP, e.g., it behaves as an electrophile and reacts with protein sulfhydryls, which results in cGMP adduction to protein sulfhydryls (protein S-guanylation). Several proteins have been identified as targets for endogenous protein S-guanylation, including Kelch-like ECH-associated protein 1 (Keap1), H-Ras, and mitochondrial heat shock proteins. 8-Nitro-cGMP signaling via protein S-guanylation of those proteins may have evolved to convey adaptive cellular stress responses. 8-Nitro-cGMP may not undergo conventional cGMP metabolism because of its resistance to phosphodiesterases. Hydrogen sulfide has recently been identified as a potent regulator for metabolisms of electrophiles including 8-nitro-cGMP, through sulfhydration of electrophiles, e.g., leading to the formation of 8-SH-cGMP. Better understanding of the molecular basis for the formation, signaling functions, and metabolisms of 8-nitro-cGMP would be useful for the development of new diagnostic approaches and treatment of diseases related to oxidative stress and redox metabolisms.
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