Analysis of Mitochondrial DNA by Two-Dimensional Agarose Gel Electrophoresis
ABSTRACT In higher vertebrates, the DNA of mitochondria takes the form of circular molecules of approximately 16 kbp. These circles are arranged in multigenomic nucleoprotein complexes or nucleoids. It is envisaged that nucleoid superstructure makes a critical contribution to the twin processes of replication and segregation of mtDNA. Replication intermediates can be isolated from cells or solid tissues and separated on agarose gels in two dimensions to reveal a wealth of data on mechanisms of DNA replication. Using this technique we have demonstrated that many molecules of replicating mtDNA have extensive regions of RNA: DNA hybrid in higher vertebrates. More recently, we have extracted mitochondrial nucleoprotein and analyzed it by the same method to derive information on the distribution of DNA-binding proteins on mitochondrial DNA. Here we describe the procedures used to isolate intact mitochondrial replication intermediates from liver and cultured cells of higher vertebrates and the process of separating DNA fragments on neutral two-dimensional agarose gels.
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ABSTRACT: Mitochondria are organelles whose main function is to generate power by oxidative phosphorylation. Some of the essential genes required for this energy production are encoded by the mitochondrial genome, a small circular double stranded DNA molecule. Human mtDNA is replicated by a specialized machinery distinct from the nuclear replisome. Defects in the mitochondrial replication machinery can lead to loss of genetic information by deletion and/or depletion of the mtDNA, which subsequently may cause disturbed oxidative phosphorylation and neuromuscular symptoms in patients. We discuss here the different components of the mitochondrial replication machinery and their role in disease. We also review the mode of mammalian mtDNA replication.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 08/2010; 1797(8):1378-88. DOI:10.1016/j.bbabio.2010.04.015 · 4.66 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Mitochondrial mutations, an important cause of incurable human neuromuscular diseases, are mostly heteroplasmic: mutated mitochondrial DNA is present in cells simultaneously with wild-type genomes, the pathogenic threshold being generally >70% of mutant mtDNA. We studied whether heteroplasmy level could be decreased by specifically designed oligoribonucleotides, targeted into mitochondria by the pathway delivering RNA molecules in vivo. Using mitochondrially imported RNAs as vectors, we demonstrated that oligoribonucleotides complementary to mutant mtDNA region can specifically reduce the proportion of mtDNA bearing a large deletion associated with the Kearns Sayre Syndrome in cultured transmitochondrial cybrid cells. These findings may be relevant to developing of a new tool for therapy of mtDNA associated diseases.Nucleic Acids Research 10/2012; 41(1). DOI:10.1093/nar/gks965 · 9.11 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The mitochondrial genome exists in numerous structural conformations, complicating the study of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) metabolism. Here, we describe the development of 2D intact mtDNA agarose gel electrophoresis (2D-IMAGE) for the separation and detection of approximately two-dozen distinct topoisomers. Although the major topoisomers were well conserved across many cell and tissue types, unique differences in certain cells and tissues were also observed. RNase treatment revealed that partially hybridized RNAs associated primarily with covalently closed circular DNA, consistent with this structure being the template for transcription. Circular structures composed of RNA:DNA hybrids contained only heavy-strand DNA sequences, implicating them as lagging-strand replication intermediates. During recovery from replicative arrest, 2D-IMAGE showed changes in both template selection and replication products. These studies suggest that discrete topoisomers are associated with specific mtDNA-directed processes. Because of the increased resolution, 2D-IMAGE has the potential to identify novel mtDNA intermediates involved in replication or transcription, or pathology including oxidative linearization, deletions or depletion.Nucleic Acids Research 12/2012; 41(4). DOI:10.1093/nar/gks1324 · 9.11 Impact Factor