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FEBS Lett. 2001 May 25;497(2-3):73-6.

Overexpression of Bcl-2 suppresses the calcium activation of a mitochondrial megachannel.

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Molecular Medicine, Wadsworth Center Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY 12201-0509, USA.


The molecular mechanism(s) by which Bcl-2 regulates apoptosis is poorly understood. Bcl-2 suppresses apoptosis by inhibiting calcium activation of the permeability transition of mitochondria. In this patch-clamp study, overexpression of Bcl-2 in mitochondria of cultured cells suppressed calcium activation of a high conductance channel that may underlie the permeability transition. All other single channel parameters were identical when multiple conductance channel activities of mitochondria from control and Bcl-2 overexpressing cells were compared. Bcl-2 forms channels in artificial membranes; however, no novel channel activities could be linked to Bcl-2 overexpression, suggesting Bcl-2 does not form channels in native inner membranes of mitochondria.

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