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Biochem J. 2002 Jul 15;365(Pt 2):391-403.

D-Lactate transport and metabolism in rat liver mitochondria.

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  • 1Dipartimento di Biochimica e Biologia Molecolare, Universit√† di Bari, Via Orabona 4, 70126 Bari, Italy.


In the present study we investigated whether isolated rat liver mitochondria can take up and metabolize D-lactate. We found the following: (1) externally added D-lactate causes oxygen uptake by mitochondria [P/O ratio (the ratio of mol of ATP synthesized to mol of oxygen atoms reduced to water during oxidative phosphorylation)=2] and membrane potential (Delta(psi)) generation in processes that are rotenone-insensitive, but inhibited by antimycin A and cyanide, and proton release from coupled mitochondria inhibited by alpha-cyanocinnamate, but not by phenylsuccinate; (2) the activity of the putative flavoprotein (D-lactate dehydrogenase) was detected in inside-out submitochondrial particles, but not in mitochondria and mitoplasts, as it is localized in the matrix phase of the mitochondrial inner membrane; (3) three novel separate translocators exist to mediate D-lactate traffic across the mitochondrial inner membrane: the D-lactate/H(+) symporter, which was investigated by measuring fluorimetrically the rate of endogenous flavin reduction, the D-lactate/oxoacid antiporter (which mediates both the D-lactate/pyruvate and D-lactate/oxaloacetate exchanges) and D-lactate/malate antiporter studied by monitoring photometrically the appearance of the D-lactate counteranions outside mitochondria. The D-lactate translocators, in the light of their different inhibition profiles separate from the monocarboxylate carrier, were found to differ from each other in the V(max) values and in the inhibition and pH profiles and were shown to regulate mitochondrial D-lactate metabolism in vitro. The D-lactate translocators and the D-lactate dehydrogenase could account for the removal of the toxic methylglyoxal from cytosol, as well as for D-lactate-dependent gluconeogenesis.

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