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J Bioenerg Biomembr. 1999 Dec;31(6):609-16.

Role of pinoline and melatonin in stabilizing hepatic microsomal membranes against oxidative stress.

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Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, 78229-3900, USA.


We investigated the influence of pinoline (0.01-1.5 mM) on microsomal membrane fluidity before and after rigidity was induced by oxidative stress. In addition, we tested the effect of pinoline in the presence of 1 mM melatonin. The fluidity in rat hepatic microsomes was monitored using fluorescence spectroscopy and it was compared to the inhibition of malonaldehyde (MDA) plus 4-hydroxyalkenals (4-HDA) production as a reflection of lipid peroxidation. Below 0.6 mM, pinoline inhibited membrane rigidity in a manner parallel to its inhibitory effect on MDA + 4-HDA formation. At concentrations between 1-1.5 mM, pinoline was less effective in stabilizing microsomal membranes than was predicted from its inhibition of lipid peroxidation. The addition of 1 mM melatonin enhanced the membrane-stabilizing activity of pinoline (0.01-0.6 mM). This cooperative effect was not observed for concentrations of pinoline between 1-1.5 mM. When pinoline was tested without induced oxidative damage, 1-1.5 mM pinoline maintained membrane fluidity at the same level as that recorded after induced lipid peroxidation. The results suggest that pinoline may be another pineal molecule that prevents membrane rigidity mediated by lipid peroxidation and this ability is enhanced by melatonin.

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