Are Reactive Oxygen Species Actually Reactive Sulfide Species?: A strategic question which will be answered by Pr Olson

OlsonPr. Kenneth R. Olson is the Emeritus Professor of Physiology, at the Indiana University School of Medicine in South Bend, Indiana, USA. At Paris Redox 2016 he will give a presentation about Case Of Mistaken Identity: Are Reactive Oxygen Species Actually Reactive Sulfide Species?

According to Pr. Olson stepwise one-electron reduction of oxygen to water produces reactive oxygen species (ROS) that are chemically and biochemically similar to reactive sulfide species (RSS) derived from one-electron oxidation of hydrogen sulfide to elemental sulfur.  Recent work in his lab has shown that methods designed to measure ROS also detect RSS, often with greater sensitivity.  These findings suggest that RSS may be far more prevalent in intracellular signaling than previously appreciated and that the contribution of ROS may be over estimated.  This conclusion is further supported by calculations that show sulfur metabolism is equivalent to estimated ROS production and that the evolution of antioxidant mechanisms coincides with sulfur-metabolizing organisms and pre-dates oxygen-dependent metabolism by 3 billion years.  These findings question the paradigm that the most biologically relevant oxidants are ROS and suggest that further research into RSS is imperative.