Gas-phase oxidation of nitric oxide: Chemical kinetics and rate constant

Hirokazu Tsukahara, Takanobu Ishida, Mitsufumi Mayumi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

126 Citations (Scopus)


Inhaled nitric oxide (NO) is gaining popularity as a selective pulmonary vasodilator. Because of the potential toxicity of NO and its oxidizing product nitrogen dioxide (NO2), any system for the delivery of inhaled NO must aim at predictable and reproducible levels of NO and at as low concentrations of NO2 as possible. This review describes the chemical kinetics and rate constant values k for the reaction 2NO + O2 = 2NO2. This reaction has been well established as a third-order homogeneous reaction. Published data support two equally plausible two-step mechanisms for the reaction between NO and O2 over a wide range of temperature and pressure. The Arrhenius equation k (L2 · mol-2, · s-1) = 1.2 x 103 e(530/T) (=1.2 x 103 x 10(230/T)) gives the best fit to the experimental values of the rate constant thus far reported in a temperature range of 273 to 600 K. Using the reaction mechanism and the rate constant k, one can make reliable predictions about NO2 formation in any set of NO inhalation therapy conditions. It is also pointed out that NO3, the intermediate of one of the two mechanisms, deserves serious attention in NO inhalation therapy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-198
Number of pages8
JournalNitric Oxide - Biology and Chemistry
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • Chemical kinetics
  • Nitric oxide
  • Nitrogen dioxide
  • Nitrogen trioxide
  • Oxidation
  • Peroxynitrite radical
  • Rate constant

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Physiology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cancer Research


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