Using positron emission tomography (PET) and nitric oxide radiolabeled with nitrogen-13 (half-life 9.97 min) we probed the distribution and kinetics of inhaled nitric oxide in anesthetized dogs. The washout of this gas after inhalation was much slower than that observed for [13N]nitrogen gas, demonstrating its uptake by lung tissue. The small fraction of radioactivity found in the plasma was determined to be in the form of [13N]nitrate. The administered gas contained < 1 ppm of nonradioactive nitric oxide, which is believed to be below the physiologic threshold for vasorelaxation.
- nitric oxide
- positron emission tomography