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Lab Invest. 2009 Jul;89(7):782-90. doi: 10.1038/labinvest.2009.39. Epub 2009 Apr 27.

Transgenic mitochondrial superoxide dismutase and mitochondrially targeted catalase prevent antiretroviral-induced oxidative stress and cardiomyopathy.

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Department of Pathology, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA.


Transgenic mice (TG) were used to define mitochondrial oxidative stress and cardiomyopathy (CM) induced by zidovudine (AZT), an antiretroviral used to treat HIV/AIDS. Genetically engineered mice either depleted or overexpressed mitochondrial superoxide dismutase (SOD2(+/-) KOs and SOD2-OX, respectively) or expressed mitochondrially targeted catalase (mCAT). TGs and wild-type (WT) littermates were treated (oral AZT, 35 days). Cardiac mitochondrial H(2)O(2), aconitase activity, histology and ultrastructure were analyzed. Left ventricle (LV) mass and LV end-diastolic dimension were determined echocardiographically. AZT induced cardiac oxidative stress and LV dysfunction in WTs. Cardiac mitochondrial H(2)O(2) increased and aconitase was inactivated in SOD2(+/-) KOs, and cardiac dysfunction was worsened by AZT. Conversely, the cardiac function in SOD2-OX and mCAT hearts was protected. In SOD2-OX and mCAT TG hearts, mitochondrial H(2)O(2), LV mass and LV cavity volume resembled corresponding values from vehicle-treated WTs. AZT worsens cardiac dysfunction and increases mitochondrial H(2)O(2) in SOD2(+/-) KO. Conversely, both SOD2-OX and mCAT TGs prevent or attenuate AZT-induced cardiac oxidative stress and LV dysfunction. As dysfunctional changes are ameliorated by decreasing and worsened by increasing H(2)O(2) abundance, oxidative stress from H(2)O(2) is crucial pathogenetically in AZT-induced mitochondrial CM.

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