An Alternative Mechanism for the Production of Hydroxyl Radicals by Stimulated Neutrophils

  • M. J. Okolow-Zubkowska
  • H. A. O. Hill
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 141)


The importance of oxygen in the microbiocidal activity of polymorphic leukocytes has been established1 for many years. Twenty years ago it was shown2 that the two-electron reduction product of oxygen, hydrogen peroxide, is present in the medium surrounding stimulated cells. Later, the superoxide ion, the one-electron reuction product of oxygen was also found3 to be produced by phagocytosing neutrophils. The three-electon reduction product, the hydroxyl radical, has since been found4 to be produced by these activated cells. A flurry of mechanisms, seeking to account for the genesis of, and relationship between, these potentially reactive species has resulted. It is now generally accepted that the superoxide ion is produced5 by a membrane-bound enzyme that requires NAD(P)H. It is not yet known whether the hydrogen peroxide that is found extracellularly arises by the direct two-electron reduction of oxygen or through the spontaneous disproportionation of superoxide:
$$ {O_2} + 2e + 2H + \to {H_2}{O_2}\ $$
$$ 20_{2}^{-}+2{{H}^{+}}\to {{H}_{2}}{{O}_{2}}+{{O}_{2}} $$


Latex Particle Respiratory Burst Phorbol Myristate Acetate Hypochlorous Acid Radical Adduct 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    C.W. Baldridge and R.W. Gerard, The extra respiration of phagocytosis, Am. J. Physiol., 103: 235 (1933).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    G..Y.N. Iyer, M.F. Islam and J.H. Quastel, Biochemical aspects of phagocytosis, Nature, 192: 535 (1961).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    B.M. Babior, R.S. Kipnes and J.T. Curnutte, The production by leukocytes of superoxide, a potential bactericidal agent. J. Clin. Invest., 52: 741 (1973)PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    A.I. Tauber and B.M. Babior, Evidence for hydroxyl radical production by human neutrophils, J. Clin. Invest., 60: 374 (1977).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    T.G. Gabig and B.M. Babior, The superoxide forming oxidase responsible for the respiratory burst in human neutrophils, J. Biol. Chem., 254: 9070 (1979)PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    F. Haber and J. Weiss, The catalytic decomposition of hydrogen peroxide by iron salts, Proc. R. Soc. Lond., 147: 332 (1934).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    J. Weinstein and B.H.J. Bielski, Kinetics of the interaction of H02 and 02 radicals with H202, the Haber-Weiss reaction, J. Amer. Chem. Soc., 101: 58 (1979).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    W.A. Pryor and R.H. Tang, Ethylene formation from methional, Biochem. Biophys. Research Commun., 81: 498 (1978).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    M.R. Green, H.A.O. Hill, M.J. Okolow-Zubkowska and A.W. Segal, The production of hydroxyl and superoxide radicals by stimulated human neutrophils - measurements by e.p.r. spectroscopy, FEBS Letts., 100: 23 (1979).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    C. Lagercrantz, Spin trapping of some short lived radicals by the nitroxide method, J. Phys. Chem., 75: 3466 (1971).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    J.M. McCord and I. Fridovich, Superoxide dimsutase. An enzyme function for erythrocuprein (hemocuprein), J. Biol. Chem., 244: 6049 (1969).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    E. Finkelstein, G.M. Rosen, and E.J. Raukman, Spin trapping of superoxide and hydroxyl radical practical aspects, Arch. Biochem. Biophys., 200: 1 (1980).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    S.J. Klebanoff and H. Rosen, Ethylene formation by polymorphonuclear leukocytes: Role of myeloperoxidase, J. Exp. Med., 148: 490 (1978).PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    C.A Long and B.H.J. Bielski, Rate of reaction of superoxide radical with chlroíde containing species, J. Phys. Chem., 84: 555 (1980).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1982

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. J. Okolow-Zubkowska
    • 1
  • H. A. O. Hill
    • 1
  1. 1.Inorganic Chemistry Laboratory OxfordUK

Personalised recommendations