Bcl-2 protects against apoptosis induced by antimycin A and bongkrekic acid without restoring cellular ATP levels.
de Graaf AO, Meijerink JP, van den Heuvel LP, DeAbreu RA, de Witte T, Jansen JH, Smeitink JA
Biochemica et Biophysica Acta (2002)
Category: apoptosis ¤ Added: Dec 17, 2003 ¤ Rating: ◊◊
Several studies indicate that mitochondrial ATP production as well as ADP/ATP exchange across mitochondrial membranes are impaired during apoptosis. We investigated whether Bcl-2 could protect against cell death under conditions in which ATP metabolism is inhibited. Inhibition of ATP production using antimycin A (AA) (complex III inhibition) combined with inhibition of ADP/ATP exchange by bongkrekic acid (BA) (adenine nucleotide translocator (ANT) inhibition) induced a sharp decrease in total cellular ATP in FL5.12 parental cells (to 35% of untreated controls after 24 h of incubation). Within 24 and 48 h, 38% and 75% of the cells had died, respectively. However, in stably transfected FL5.12 Bcl-2 subclones, no cell death occurred under these experimental conditions. Similar results were obtained with Jurkat and Bcl-2 overexpressing Jurkat cells. Total cellular ATP levels were equally affected in FL5.12 Bcl-2 overexpressing cells and FL5.12 parental cells. This indicates that Bcl-2 overexpressing cells are able to survive with very low cellular ATP content. Furthermore, Bcl-2 did not protect against cell death by restoring ATP levels. This suggests that, under these conditions, Bcl-2 acts by inhibiting the signalling cascade triggered by the inhibitors that would normally lead to apoptosis.