Mitochondria-targeted paraquat and metformin mediate ROS production to induce multiple pathways of retrograde signaling: A dose-dependent phenomenon.

Change log
Chowdhury, Anindya Roy 
Zielonka, Jacek 
Kalyanaraman, Balaraman 
Hartley, Richard C 
Murphy, Michael P 

The mitochondrial electron transport chain is a major source of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and is also a target of ROS, with an implied role in the stabilization of hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) and induction of the AMPK pathway. Here we used varying doses of two agents, Mito-Paraquat and Mito-Metformin, that have been conjugated to cationic triphenylphosphonium (TPP+) moiety to selectively target them to the mitochondrial matrix compartment, thereby resulting in the site-specific generation of ROS within mitochondria. These agents primarily induce superoxide (O2•-) production by acting on complex I. In Raw264.7 macrophages, C2C12 skeletal myocytes, and HCT116 adenocarcinoma cells, we show that mitochondria-targeted oxidants can induce ROS (O2•- and H2O2). In all three cell lines tested, the mitochondria-targeted agents disrupted membrane potential and activated calcineurin and the Cn-dependent retrograde signaling pathway. Hypoxic culture conditions also induced Cn activation and HIF1α activation in a temporally regulated manner, with the former appearing at shorter exposure times. Together, our results indicate that mitochondrial oxidant-induced retrograde signaling is driven by disruption of membrane potential and activation of Ca2+/Cn pathway and is independent of ROS-induced HIF1α or AMPK pathways.

Calcineurin activation, HIF1α, Hypoxia mediated stress, Macrophage cell line, Mitochondria targeted agents, Mitochondrial ROS, Retrograde signaling, Hydrogen Peroxide, Metformin, Mitochondria, Paraquat, Reactive Oxygen Species, Signal Transduction
Journal Title
Redox Biol
Conference Name
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Elsevier BV
Medical Research Council (MC_U105663142)
Wellcome Trust (110159/Z/15/Z)
Medical Research Council (MC_UU_00015/3)