It’s Not Nitrous Oxide
Nitric oxide (NO) is often confused with nitrous oxide (N2O, sometimes called “laughing gas”), the anesthetic whose second nitrogen atom creates a completely different structure with different chemical properties. Nitric oxide’s single unpaired electron creates its immense signaling power.
NO: Nitric Oxide
N2O: Nitrous Oxide
Nitric Oxide Naturally Occurs In The Body
Your body is making nitric oxide every second of every day. The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was awarded to scientists who discovered this tiny molecule’s ability to control blood pressure and vascular tone. Nitric oxide, which is produced when the body modifies the essential amino acid L-arginine, is integral to numerous physiological mechanisms.
It’s Your Body’s Defense System
When a threat is present, white blood cells in your immune system engulf invading bacteria, viruses, and fungi, releasing a burst of nitric oxide to destroy the invading organism. Novan created technology to enable targeted delivery of clinically-meaningful amounts of nitric oxide, which can be used to treat patients with many different medical conditions.
A Whole Body Of Applications
Nitric oxide plays an important role in many biological processes. Examples include:
- Immunology (bacterial, viral, and inflammatory responses)
- Cardiology/pulmonology (vasodilation/hemostasis, anti-coagulati and respiration)
- Neurology (neurotransmitter)