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Record Information
StatusDetected and Quantified
Creation Date2006-05-22 15:12:10 UTC
Update Date2020-04-23 20:55:40 UTC
Secondary Accession Numbers
  • HMDB02786
Metabolite Identification
Common NameNitrite
DescriptionNitrite, also known as [no(OH)] or HNO2, belongs to the class of inorganic compounds known as non-metal nitrites. These are inorganic non-metallic compounds containing a nitrite as its largest oxoanion. Intake of some amount of nitrates and nitrites is a normal part of the nitrogen cycle in humans. Nitrite is an extremely weak basic (essentially neutral) compound (based on its pKa). Nitrite exists in all living species, ranging from bacteria to humans. glyceryl 1,2-dinitrate and nitrite can be biosynthesized from nitroglycerin; which is mediated by the enzyme aldehyde dehydrogenase, mitochondrial. In humans, nitrite is involved in nitric oxide signaling pathway. Ingested nitrate or nitrite under conditions that result in endogenous nitrosation is probably carcinogenic to humans (Group 2A). Nitrite is a nitrite compound is either a salt or an ester of nitrous acid. Nitrite is a potentially toxic compound. Methemoglobinemia can be treated with supplemental oxygen and methylene blue 1% solution administered intravenously slowly over five minutes followed by IV flush with normal saline. Several mechanisms for nitrite conversion to NO have been described including enzymatic reduction by xanthine oxidoreductase, the mitochondria, and NO synthase (NOS), as well as nonenzymatic acidic disproportionation.
Nitrosyl hydroxideChEBI
Acid, nitrousHMDB
Nitrous acidHMDB
Chemical FormulaHNO2
Average Molecular Weight47.0134
Monoisotopic Molecular Weight47.000728281
IUPAC Namenitrous acid
Traditional Namenitrous acid
CAS Registry Number14797-65-0
InChI Identifier
Chemical Taxonomy
Description belongs to the class of inorganic compounds known as non-metal nitrites. These are inorganic non-metallic compounds containing a nitrite as its largest oxoanion.
KingdomInorganic compounds
Super ClassHomogeneous non-metal compounds
ClassNon-metal oxoanionic compounds
Sub ClassNon-metal nitrites
Direct ParentNon-metal nitrites
Alternative Parents
  • Non-metal nitrite
  • Inorganic nitrite
  • Inorganic oxide
Molecular FrameworkNot Available
External Descriptors
Physiological effect

Health effect:


Route of exposure:


Biological location:


Biological role:

Industrial application:

Physical Properties
Experimental Properties
Melting PointNot AvailableNot Available
Boiling PointNot AvailableNot Available
Water SolubilityNot AvailableNot Available
LogPNot AvailableNot Available
Predicted Properties
pKa (Strongest Basic)-3.5ChemAxon
Physiological Charge0ChemAxon
Hydrogen Acceptor Count3ChemAxon
Hydrogen Donor Count1ChemAxon
Polar Surface Area49.66 ŲChemAxon
Rotatable Bond Count0ChemAxon
Refractivity8.72 m³·mol⁻¹ChemAxon
Polarizability2.81 ųChemAxon
Number of Rings0ChemAxon
Rule of FiveYesChemAxon
Ghose FilterNoChemAxon
Veber's RuleNoChemAxon
MDDR-like RuleNoChemAxon
Spectrum TypeDescriptionSplash KeyView
LC-MS/MSLC-MS/MS Spectrum - Quattro_QQQ 10V, Negative (Annotated)splash10-0007-9000000000-9cf82c70d7bc0883ea95Spectrum
LC-MS/MSLC-MS/MS Spectrum - Quattro_QQQ 25V, Negative (Annotated)splash10-0005-9000000000-e52588fd7e5b6989584dSpectrum
LC-MS/MSLC-MS/MS Spectrum - Quattro_QQQ 40V, Negative (Annotated)splash10-0007-9000000000-891acfcb7562d9875939Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Positivesplash10-0002-9000000000-701578487c4dc8b94d22Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Positivesplash10-0002-9000000000-701578487c4dc8b94d22Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Positivesplash10-0002-9000000000-701578487c4dc8b94d22Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 10V, Negativesplash10-0002-9000000000-9c61b79c18a51c772d86Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 20V, Negativesplash10-0002-9000000000-9c61b79c18a51c772d86Spectrum
Predicted LC-MS/MSPredicted LC-MS/MS Spectrum - 40V, Negativesplash10-0002-9000000000-9c61b79c18a51c772d86Spectrum
Biological Properties
Cellular LocationsNot Available
Biospecimen Locations
  • Blood
  • Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)
  • Saliva
  • Urine
Tissue Locations
  • Bladder
  • Brain
  • Erythrocyte
  • Fibroblasts
  • Heart
  • Intestine
  • Kidney
  • Leukocyte
  • Liver
  • Lung
  • Placenta
  • Platelet
  • Skeletal Muscle
  • Spleen
  • Testis
Normal Concentrations
BloodDetected and Quantified32.0 +/- 2.1 uMAdult (>18 years old)Both
BloodDetected and Quantified28.2 +/- 2.3 uMAdult (>18 years old)Female
BloodDetected and Quantified36.8 +/- 2.8 uMAdult (>18 years old)Male
BloodDetected and Quantified1.51 +/- 0.76 uMChildren (1-13 years old)MaleNormal details
BloodDetected and Quantified0.17 (0 - 0.35) uMAdult (>18 years old)BothNormal
    • Geigy Scientific ...
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)Detected and Quantified15.53 +/- 1.49 uMAdult (>18 years old)FemaleNormal details
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)Detected and Quantified5.57 +/- 0.39 uMAdult (>18 years old)FemaleNormal details
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)Detected and Quantified1.41 +/- 0.46 uMAdult (>18 years old)BothNormal details
SalivaDetected and Quantified180 (60-300) uMAdult (>18 years old)BothNormal details
UrineDetected and Quantified0.46 +/- 0.95 umol/mmol creatinineChildren (1-13 years old)MaleNormal details
Abnormal Concentrations
BloodDetected and Quantified21.8 +/- 1.3 uMAdult (>18 years old)Both
BloodDetected and Quantified1.10 +/- 0.36 uMChildren (1-13 years old)MaleDuchenne Muscular Dystrophy details
BloodDetected and Quantified1.06 (0.4-2.63) uMAdult (>18 years old)BothMalaria details
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)Detected and Quantified5.82 +/- 3.2 uMAdult (>18 years old)BothMotor neuron disease (MND) details
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)Detected and Quantified21.0 +/- 1.68 uMAdult (>18 years old)FemalePreeclampsia details
Cerebrospinal Fluid (CSF)Detected and Quantified8.28 +/- 0.89 uMAdult (>18 years old)FemalePreeclampsia details
UrineDetected and Quantified0.97 +/- 1.10 umol/mmol creatinineChildren (1-13 years old)MaleDuchenne Muscular Dystrophy details
Associated Disorders and Diseases
Disease References
  1. Agbenyega T, Angus B, Bedu-Addo G, Baffoe-Bonnie B, Griffin G, Vallance P, Krishna S: Plasma nitrogen oxides and blood lactate concentrations in Ghanaian children with malaria. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 1997 May-Jun;91(3):298-302. [PubMed:9231201 ]
  1. Jacob TD, Ochoa JB, Udekwu AO, Wilkinson J, Murray T, Billiar TR, Simmons RL, Marion DW, Peitzman AB: Nitric oxide production is inhibited in trauma patients. J Trauma. 1993 Oct;35(4):590-6; discussion 596-7. [PubMed:8411284 ]
Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
  1. Horster I, Weigt-Usinger K, Carmann C, Chobanyan-Jurgens K, Kohler C, Schara U, Kayacelebi AA, Beckmann B, Tsikas D, Lucke T: The L-arginine/NO pathway and homoarginine are altered in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and improved by glucocorticoids. Amino Acids. 2015 Sep;47(9):1853-63. doi: 10.1007/s00726-015-2018-x. Epub 2015 Jun 12. [PubMed:26066683 ]
Motor neuron disease
  1. Shukla R, Rajani M, Barthwal MK, Srivastava N, Dikshit M: Cerebrospinal fluid nitrite and malondialdehyde levels in patients with motor neuron disease. Int J Neurosci. 2003 Aug;113(8):1043-54. [PubMed:12888419 ]
  1. Celik O, Hascalik S, Turkoz Y, Hascalik M, Gokdeniz R: Cerebrospinal fluid nitric oxide level changes in preeclampsia. Eur J Obstet Gynecol Reprod Biol. 2003 Dec 10;111(2):141-5. [PubMed:14597241 ]
Associated OMIM IDs
DrugBank IDNot Available
Phenol Explorer Compound IDNot Available
FooDB IDFDB023064
KNApSAcK IDNot Available
Chemspider IDNot Available
KEGG Compound IDC00088
BioCyc IDNot Available
BiGG IDNot Available
Wikipedia LinkNitrous acid
METLIN IDNot Available
PubChem Compound24529
PDB IDNot Available
ChEBI ID25567
Food Biomarker OntologyNot Available
Synthesis ReferenceNakata, Sumio; Eiki, Toshio; Tanaka, Norihiro; Koyama, Tadashi; Tsukui, Hiroto; Watanabe, Shizuo. Production of nitrite ions from trinitrophenyl myosin and from trinitrophenyl subfragment-1. Journal of Biochemistry (Tokyo, Japan) (1986), 99(1), 27-32.
Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)Download (PDF)
General References
  1. Takahama U, Oniki T, Murata H: The presence of 4-hydroxyphenylacetic acid in human saliva and the possibility of its nitration by salivary nitrite in the stomach. FEBS Lett. 2002 May 8;518(1-3):116-8. [PubMed:11997029 ]
  2. Miyado T, Tanaka Y, Nagai H, Takeda S, Saito K, Fukushi K, Yoshida Y, Wakida S, Niki E: Simultaneous determination of nitrate and nitrite in biological fluids by capillary electrophoresis and preliminary study on their determination by microchip capillary electrophoresis. J Chromatogr A. 2004 Oct 8;1051(1-2):185-91. [PubMed:15532572 ]
  3. Tsikas D: Methods of quantitative analysis of the nitric oxide metabolites nitrite and nitrate in human biological fluids. Free Radic Res. 2005 Aug;39(8):797-815. [PubMed:16036360 ]