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Received April 20, 2017; Revision received July 11, 2017
In this work, it was found that the ability of common uncouplers – carbonyl cyanide p-trifluoromethoxyphenylhydrazone (FCCP) and 2,4-dinitrophenol (DNP) – to reduce membrane potential of isolated rat liver mitochondria was diminished in the presence of millimolar concentrations of the known cytochrome c oxidase inhibitor – cyanide. In the experiments, mitochondria were energized by addition of ATP in the presence of rotenone, inhibiting oxidation of endogenous substrates via respiratory complex I. Cyanide also reduced the uncoupling effect of FCCP and DNP on mitochondria energized by succinate in the presence of ferricyanide. Importantly, cyanide did not alter the protonophoric activity of FCCP and DNP in artificial bilayer lipid membranes. The causes of the effect of cyanide on the efficiency of protonophoric uncouplers in mitochondria are considered in the framework of the suggestion that conformational changes of membrane proteins could affect the state of lipids in their vicinity. In particular, changes in local microviscosity and vacuum permittivity could change the efficiency of protonophore-mediated translocation.
KEY WORDS: mitochondria, uncoupler, protonophore, oxidative phosphorylation, mitochondria, respiration, membrane potential