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Nature. 1998 Aug 13;394(6694):694-7.

A mutation in succinate dehydrogenase cytochrome b causes oxidative stress and ageing in nematodes.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Life Science, Tokai University School of Medicine, Isehara, Kanagawa, Japan. nishii@is.icc.u-tokai.ac.jp

Abstract

Much attention has focused on the aetiology of oxidative damage in cellular and organismal ageing. Especially toxic are the reactive oxygen byproducts of respiration and other biological processes. A mev-1(kn1) mutant of Caenorhabditis elegans has been found to be hypersensitive to raised oxygen concentrations. Unlike the wild type, its lifespan decreases dramatically as oxygen concentrations are increased from 1 to 60%. Strains bearing this mutation accumulate markers of ageing (such as fluorescent materials and protein carbonyls) faster than the wild type. We show here that mev-1 encodes a subunit of the enzyme succinate dehydrogenase cytochrome b, which is a component of complex II of the mitochondrial electron transport chain. We found that the ability of complex II to catalyse electron transport from succinate to ubiquinone is compromised in mev-1 animals. This may cause an indirect increase in superoxide levels, which in turn leads to oxygen hypersensitivity and premature ageing. Our results indicate that mev-1 governs the rate of ageing by modulating the cellular response to oxidative stress.

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PMID:
9716135
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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