Send to

Choose Destination
Biochim Biophys Acta. 2006 Feb;1763(2):214-25. Epub 2006 Jan 18.

GSH depletion, protein S-glutathionylation and mitochondrial transmembrane potential hyperpolarization are early events in initiation of cell death induced by a mixture of isothiazolinones in HL60 cells.

Author information

Department of Molecular Biology, University of Siena, via Fiorentina 1, 53100 Siena, Italy.


We recently described that brief exposure of HL60 cells to a mixture of 5-chloro-2-methyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one (CMI) and 2-methyl-4-isothiazolin-3-one (MI) induces apoptosis at low concentrations (0.001-0.01%) and necrosis at higher concentrations (0.05-0.1%). In this study, we show that glutathione (GSH) depletion, reactive oxygen species generation, hyperpolarization of mitochondrial transmembrane potential (DeltaPsim) and formation of protein-GSH mixed disulphides (S-glutathionylation) are early molecular events that precede the induction of cell death by CMI/MI. When the cells exhibit common signs of apoptosis, they show activation of caspase-9, reduction of DeltaPsim and, more importantly, decreased protein S-glutathionylation. In contrast, necrosis is associated with severe mitochondrial damage and maximal protein S-glutathionylation. CMI/MI-induced cytotoxicity is also accompanied by decreased activity of GSH-related enzymes. Pre-incubation with L-buthionine-(S,R)-sulfoximine (BSO) clearly switches the mode of cell death from apoptosis to necrosis at 0.01% CMI/MI. Collectively, these results demonstrate that CMI/MI alters the redox status of HL60 cells, and the extent and kinetics of GSH depletion and S-glutathionylation appear to determine whether cells undergo apoptosis or necrosis. We hypothesize that S-glutathionylation of certain thiol groups accompanied by GSH depletion plays a critical role in the molecular mechanism of CMI/MI cytotoxicity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center