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See detailMitochondrial DNA depletion in respiratory chain-deficient Parkinson disease neurons.
Grünewald, Anne UL; Rygiel, Karolina A.; Hepplewhite, Philippa D. et al

in Annals of Neurology (2016), 79(3), 366-378

OBJECTIVE: To determine the extent of respiratory chain abnormalities and investigate the contribution of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to the loss of respiratory chain complexes (CI-IV) in the substantia ... [more ▼]

OBJECTIVE: To determine the extent of respiratory chain abnormalities and investigate the contribution of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) to the loss of respiratory chain complexes (CI-IV) in the substantia nigra (SN) of idiopathic Parkinson disease (IPD) patients at the single-neuron level. METHODS: Multiple-label immunofluorescence was applied to postmortem sections of 10 IPD patients and 10 controls to quantify the abundance of CI-IV subunits (NDUFB8 or NDUFA13, SDHA, UQCRC2 and COXI), and mitochondrial transcription factors (TFAM and TFB2M) relative to mitochondrial mass (Porin and GRP75) in dopaminergic neurons. To assess the involvement of mtDNA in respiratory chain deficiency in IPD, SN neurons, isolated with laser-capture microdissection, were assayed for mtDNA deletions, copy number and presence of transcription/replication-associated 7S DNA employing a triplex real-time PCR assay. RESULTS: While mitochondrial mass was unchanged in single SN neurons from IPD patients, we observed a significant reduction in the abundances of CI and II subunits. At single-cell level, CI and II deficiencies were correlated in patients. The CI deficit concomitantly occurred with low abundances of the mtDNA transcription factors TFAM and TFB2M, which also initiate transcription-primed mtDNA replication. Consistent with this, real-time PCR analysis revealed fewer transcription/replication-associated mtDNA molecules and an overall reduction in mtDNA copy number in patients. This effect was more pronounced in single IPD neurons with severe complex I deficiency. INTERPRETATION: Respiratory chain dysfunction in IPD neurons not only involves CI, but also extends to CII. These deficiencies are possibly a consequence of the interplay between nDNA and mtDNA-encoded factors mechanistically connected via TFAM. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. [less ▲]

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See detailQuantitative quadruple-label immunofluorescence of mitochondrial and cytoplasmic proteins in single neurons from human midbrain tissue.
Grünewald, Anne UL; Lax, Nichola Z.; Rocha, Mariana C. et al

in Journal of neuroscience methods (2014), 232

BACKGROUND: Respiratory chain (RC) deficiencies are found in primary mtDNA diseases. Focal RC defects are also associated with ageing and neurodegenerative disorders, e.g. in substantia nigra (SN) neurons ... [more ▼]

BACKGROUND: Respiratory chain (RC) deficiencies are found in primary mtDNA diseases. Focal RC defects are also associated with ageing and neurodegenerative disorders, e.g. in substantia nigra (SN) neurons from Parkinson's disease patients. In mitochondrial disease and ageing, mtDNA mutational loads vary considerably between neurons necessitating single cell-based assessment of RC deficiencies. Evaluating the full extent of RC deficiency within SN neurons is challenging because their size precludes investigations in serial sections. We developed an assay to measure RC abnormalities in individual SN neurons using quadruple immunofluorescence. NEW METHOD: Using antibodies against subunits of complex I (CI) and IV, porin and tyrosine hydroxylase together with IgG subtype-specific fluorescent labelled secondary antibodies, we quantified the expression of CI and CIV compared to mitochondrial mass in dopaminergic neurons. CI:porin and CIV:porin ratios were determined relative to a standard control. RESULTS: Quantification of expression of complex subunits in midbrain sections from patients with mtDNA disease and known RC deficiencies consistently showed reduced CI:porin and/or CIV:porin ratios. COMPARISON WITH EXISTING METHOD(S): The standard histochemical method to investigate mitochondrial dysfunction, the cytochrome c oxidase/succinate dehydrogenase assay, measures CIV and CII activities. To also study CI in a patient, immunohistology in additional sections, i.e. in different neurons, is required. Our method allows correlation of the expression of CI, CIV and mitochondrial mass at a single cell level. CONCLUSION: Quantitative quadruple-label immunofluorescence is a reliable tool to measure RC deficiencies in individual neurons that will enable new insights in the molecular mechanisms underlying inherited and acquired mitochondrial dysfunction. [less ▲]

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