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Effects of warm and cold ischemia on mitochondrial functions in brain, liver and kidney

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The purpose of this work was to study the effects of warm (37°C) and cold (4°C) ischemia on different mitochondrial functions in rat brain, liver and kidney.

After l0 to 60 minutes of ischemia at 37°C the energy coupled respiration as well as the ADP-induced malate-aspartate shuttle activity in brain and liver mitochondria or the rate of mitochondrial ATP synthesis in kidney were significantly decreased. However, the respiratory rates and the shuttle activity in the absence of ADP remained unchanged. These data suggest that ischemia primarily affects electron transport in the respiratory chain rather than the hydrogen shuttle and the energy coupling system. When the temperature during the indicated ischemic periods was decreased to 4°C, in brain and liver no significant alterations of these mitochondrial functions were found in comparison with the non-ischemic controls. When rat kidneys were stored for 36 hours at 4°C according to Collins mimicing transplantation conditions, the mitochondrial respiration and ATP synthesis were only slightly decreased. It therefore appears that hypothermia can prevent effectively mitochondrial dysfunction due to ischemia.

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Baumann, M., Bender, E., Sömmer, G. et al. Effects of warm and cold ischemia on mitochondrial functions in brain, liver and kidney. Mol Cell Biochem 87, 137–145 (1989). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00219256

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Key words

  • mitochondria
  • brain
  • liver
  • kidney
  • ischemia
  • hypothermia