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Biological research

Mitochondrial ATPase activity and membrane fluidity changes in rat liver in response to intoxication with buckthorn (Karwinskia humboldtiana).


PMID 25889629

Abstract

Karwinskia humboldtiana (Kh) is a poisonous plant of the rhamnacea family. To elucidate some of the subcellular effects of Kh toxicity, membrane fluidity and ATPase activities as hydrolytic and as proton-pumping activity were assessed in rat liver submitochondrial particles. Rats were randomly assigned into control non-treated group and groups that received 1, 1.5 and 2 g/Kg body weight of dry powder of Kh fruit, respectively. Rats were euthanized at day 1 and 7 after treatment. Rats under Kh treatment at all dose levels tested, does not developed any neurologic symptoms. However, we detected alterations in membrane fluidity and ATPase activity. Lower dose of Kh on day 1 after treatment induced higher mitochondrial membrane fluidity than control group. This change was strongly correlated with increased ATPase activity and pH gradient driven by ATP hydrolysis. On the other hand, membrane fluidity was hardly affected on day 7 after treatment with Kh. Surprisingly, the pH gradient driven by ATPase activity was significantly higher than controls despite an diminution of the hydrolytic activity of ATPase. The changes in ATPase activity and pH gradient driven by ATPase activity suggest an adaptive condition whereby the fluidity of the membrane is altered.

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