Inhalable nitric oxide shown safe as potential anti-microbial treatment

Results from a clinical study by a UBC-Vancouver Coastal Health research team have increased hope for a new, effective and inexpensive anti-microbial treatment using inhalable nitric oxide.

Nitric oxide is produced naturally by the body’s immune system and is a potent anti-microbial agent against bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites, but the safety of nitric oxide given to humans at microbe killing concentrations has not been studied until now.

In the new study, published in this month’s edition of the Journal of Cystic Fibrosis, healthy adult volunteers show no adverse effects associated with therapeutic antimicrobial concentrations of nitric oxide. The study was conducted at UBC Hospital, where healthy volunteers were recruited and inhaled gas was administrated over a period of one week.

“In retrospect, it’s not surprising to find that a molecule naturally produced in our own body to fight invading pathogens is useful as an antimicrobial drug,” says lead author Prof. Chris Miller, assistant professor in UBC’s Division of Respiratory Medicine and a member of the Immunity and Infection Research Centre at the Vancouver Coastal Health Research Institute. “This study confirms the safety aspect of an efficacious mode of delivery.”

This Phase I safety study was funded by the Lotte & John Hecht Memorial Foundation, and leads the way to efficacy studies targeting the spread of resistant pulmonary infections – focusing first on Cystic Fibrosis and Tuberculosis,  a deadly pulmonary infection  that kill millions of people every year. The study results were licensed by the UBC Industry Liaison Office to AIT, an Israeli company.

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Breakthrough in the study of Autoimmune Disease

Jun 03, 2011

Diseases of the immune system such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis could be treated by a gas produced naturally by the body, scientists at the University have found.

Nitric oxide shown to cause colon cancer

Jan 20, 2009

(PhysOrg.com) -- Researchers long ago established a link between inflammation, cancer and the compound nitric oxide, which may be produced when the immune system responds to bacterial infections, including those of the colon. ...

Recommended for you

Volunteer guidelines for clinicians in the Ebola epidemic

47 seconds ago

Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness Journal has released a novel, informative article that speaks to volunteers within the Ebola epidemic. The article, contributed by a consortium of Boston-based hospitals, is ent ...

US lawmaker: New case raises questions on Ebola

59 minutes ago

The new case of Ebola diagnosed in New York City has raised "even more questions about procedures in treating patients and risks to Americans," a Republican committee chairman said Friday.

Aid group: Ebola contagion risk can't be zero

1 hour ago

Despite stringent infection-control measures, the risk of Ebola's spread cannot be entirely eliminated, Doctors Without Borders said Friday after one of its doctors caught the dreaded disease while working in Guinea and went ...

WHO eyes mass Ebola vaccines by mid-2015

1 hour ago

Hundreds of thousands of Ebola vaccine doses could be rolled out to west Africa by the middle of next year, the World Health Organization said Friday, after new cases of the killer virus were reported in New York and Mali.

User comments