Molecular and cellular endocrinology

Disentangling the effect of dietary restriction on mitochondrial function using recombinant inbred mice.

PMID 27597651


Dietary restriction (DR) extends lifespan and healthspan in many species, but precisely how it elicits its beneficial effects is unclear. We investigated the impact of DR on mitochondrial function within liver and skeletal muscle of female ILSXISS mice that exhibit strain-specific variation in lifespan under 40% DR. Strains TejJ89 (lifespan increased under DR), TejJ48 (lifespan unaffected by DR) and TejJ114 (lifespan decreased under DR) were studied following 10 months of 40% DR (13 months of age). Oxygen consumption rates (OCR) within isolated liver mitochondria were unaffected by DR in TejJ89 and TejJ48, but decreased by DR in TejJ114. DR had no effect on hepatic protein levels of PGC-1a, TFAM, and OXPHOS complexes IV. Mitonuclear protein imbalance (nDNA:mtDNA ratio) was unaffected by DR, but HSP90 protein levels were reduced in TejJ114 under DR. Surprisingly hepatic mitochondrial hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) production was elevated by DR in TejJ89, with total superoxide dismutase activity and protein carbonyls increased by DR in both TejJ89 and TejJ114. In skeletal muscle, DR had no effect on mitochondrial OCR, OXPHOS complexes or mitonuclear protein imbalance, but H2O2 production was decreased in TejJ114 and nuclear PGC-1a increased in TejJ89 under DR. Our findings indicate that hepatic mitochondrial dysfunction associated with reduced lifespan of TejJ114 mice under 40% DR, but similar dysfunction was not apparent in skeletal muscle mitochondria. We highlight tissue-specific differences in the mitochondrial response in ILSXISS mice to DR, and underline the importance and challenges of exploiting genetic heterogeneity to help understand mechanisms of ageing.