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Received February 22, 2011
In the preceding paper (A. Ghosh et al. (2011) Biochemistry (Moscow), 76, 1051-1060), using several comparable tissue materials, it has been convincingly demonstrated that methylglyoxal, a normal metabolite, inhibits mitochondrial complex I of specifically malignant cells. This suggests a distinct alteration of complex I, a highly important enzyme for energy (ATP) production, in malignancy. The present paper shows that as a consequence of this inhibition mitochondrial membrane potential is drastically reduced in sarcoma tissue but not in normal skeletal muscle. This was estimated spectrofluorimetrically using the dye rhodamine 123. As a consequence, cytochrome c was released from the sarcoma mitochondria as evidenced by Western blot analysis. Moreover, on treatment with methylglyoxal membrane potential collapse of sarcoma 180 cells was also indicated by fluorescence-activated cell sorter analysis. Atomic force microscopic study demonstrated gross structural alteration specifically of tumor mitochondria on methylglyoxal treatment. All these studies suggest that methylglyoxal might initiate an apoptotic event in malignant cells.
KEY WORDS: sarcoma, methylglyoxal, membrane potential, atomic force microscopy, cytochrome c