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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2018 (2018), Article ID 1873962, 17 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2018/1873962
Review Article

Antioxidant and Cell-Signaling Functions of Hydrogen Sulfide in the Central Nervous System

1Department of Biomedical Science, Graduate School, Kyung Hee University, 26 Kyungheedae-ro, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 02447, Republic of Korea
2Department of Applied Chemistry, College of Applied Sciences, Kyung Hee University, Deogyeong-daero, Giheung-gu, Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do 17104, Republic of Korea
3Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, College of Medicine, Dong-A University, 32 Daesingongwon-ro, Seo-gu, Busan 49201, Republic of Korea
4East-West Medical Research Institute, Kyung Hee University, 26 Kyungheedae-ro, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 02447, Republic of Korea
5Department of Anatomy and Neurobiology, College of Medicine, Kyung Hee University, 26 Kyungheedae-ro, Dongdaemun-gu, Seoul 02447, Republic of Korea

Correspondence should be addressed to Junyang Jung; rk.ca.uhk@gnujj

Received 28 August 2017; Revised 13 November 2017; Accepted 11 December 2017; Published 4 February 2018

Academic Editor: Sebastien Talbot

Copyright © 2018 Ulfuara Shefa et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Hydrogen sulfide (H2S), a toxic gaseous molecule, plays a physiological role in regulating homeostasis and cell signaling. H2S is produced from cysteine by enzymes, such as cystathionine β-synthase (CBS), cystathionine γ-lyase (CSE), cysteine aminotransferase (CAT), and 3-mercaptopyruvate sulfurtransferase (3MST). These enzymes regulate the overall production of H2S in the body. H2S has a cell-signaling function in the CNS and plays important roles in combating oxidative species such as reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS) in the body. H2S is crucial for maintaining balanced amounts of antioxidants to protect the body from oxidative stress, and appropriate amounts of H2S are required to protect the CNS in particular. The body regulates CBS, 3MST, and CSE levels in the CNS, and higher or lower levels of these enzymes cause various neurodegenerative diseases. This review discusses how H2S protects the CNS by acting as an antioxidant that reduces excessive amounts of ROS and RNS. Additionally, H2S regulates cell signaling to combat neuroinflammation and protect against central neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), Huntington’s disease (HD), and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).