Hydrogen sulfide donors in research and drug development
Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has recently emerged as an important biological gasomediator as a result of numerous insightful studies. The use of H2S releasing compounds has attracted much attention as they can exert crucial effects on a wide range of cellular signaling processes. Some of these effects are potentially exploitable in terms of anti-inflammatory and anti-tumor effects, as well as precise ion-channel regulation, cardiovascular protection and oxidation resistance. Unfortunately, the potential therapeutic effects of H2S are controversial due to conflicting published results regarding its effects on cellular activities arising, perhaps in part, from the use of different H2S donors. Therefore it is essential to review the most commonly used H2S releasing compounds, some of which are currently in clinical trials along with their associated in vitro and/or in vivo biological effects.