Professor Takashi Uchida of Tohoku University and others have developed a technology called "sNOOpy" that visualizes nitric acid and nitrite ions, which are closely related to the generation of nitric oxide (NO) in animal cells, which was not possible until now. Did.It is expected to be useful for drug development of diseases such as heart attack, ED, and diabetes.

 NO has the function of dilating blood vessels and is associated with cardiovascular diseases such as heart attack and many diseases such as ED.The amount of NO generated in cells can be known by measuring the concentration of substances such as nitric acid and nitrite, but until now it was not possible to measure and visualize these in animal cells.

 The group noted that rhizobia inhabiting soybean roots sense nitric acid.The "Snoopy" method is a method of measuring changes in the intracellular nitric acid amount in real time by applying the nitric acid sensor of this rhizobia.Named after the Beagle dog character that appears in the cartoon "Peanuts".Since fluorescence is generated where nitric acid is present, it has become possible to visually check the intracellular nitric acid concentration in real time.By using this, it is possible to identify the part where NO is excessively generated and conversely the part where NO is insufficient.

 The ability to measure nitric acid concentration in animal cells is expected to be useful in the development of drugs for many diseases such as cardiovascular disease in the future.In addition, nitric acid is a substance necessary for the growth of plants, and if this method is developed, it can be used as a new growth management tool in agricultural production, and its wide range of applications is expected.

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