[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Atovaquone, a coenzyme Q analogue has been indicated to specifically target the cytochrome bc1 complex of the mitochondrial respiratory chain in the malarial parasite and other protozoan. Various mutations in the quinone binding site of the cytochrome b gene of Plasmodium spp such as M133I, L144S, L271V, K272R, Y268C, Y268S, Y268N, V284F are suggesting to associate with resistance to atovaquone. There is no direct evidence of relation between the mutations and resistance to atovaquone in Plasmodium parasite has been available. Technical difficulties in isolating active assayable mitochondria in the malarial parasite hinder us to obtain direct biochemical evidence to support the relation between the mutations and drug resistance. The establishment of a mitochondrial isolation method for the malaria parasite has allowed us to test the degree of resistance of P. berghei isolates to atovaquone directly. We have tested the activity of dihydroorotate (DHO)-cytochrome c reductase in various P. berghei atovaquone resistant clones in the presence of a wide concentration range of atovaquone. Our results show the IC50 of P. berghei atovaquone resistant clones is much higher (1.5 up to 40 nM) in comparison to the atovaquone sensitive clones (0.132-0.465 nM). The highest IC50 was revealed in clones carrying Y268C and Y268N mutations (which play an important role in atovaquone resistance in P. falciparum), with an approximately 100-fold increase. The findings indicate the importance of the mutation in the quinone binding site of the cytochrome b gene and that provide a direct evidence for the atovaquone inhibitory mechanism in the cytochrome bc1 complex of the parasite.
Parasitology International 09/2014; 64(3). DOI:10.1016/j.parint.2014.09.011 · 1.86 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We investigated the in vitro inhibitory effects of avanafil, a novel, potent inhibitor of phosphodiesterase-5, on 11 phosphodiesterases. We also studied its potentiation of penile tumescence in dogs.
Phosphodiesterase assay was done with the 4 phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors avanafil, sildenafil, vardenafil and tadalafil using 11 phosphodiesterase isozymes. In anesthetized dogs the pelvic nerve was repeatedly stimulated to evoke tumescence. Intracavernous pressure was measured after avanafil or sildenafil administration.
Avanafil specifically inhibited phosphodiesterase-5 activity at a 50% inhibitory concentration of 5.2 nM. Avanafil showed higher selectivity (121-fold) against phosphodiesterase-6 than sildenafil and vardenafil (16 to 21-fold) and showed excellent selectivity (greater than 10,000-fold) against phosphodiesterase-1 compared with sildenafil (375-fold). Avanafil also had higher selectivity against phosphodiesterase-11 than tadalafil (greater than 19,000 vs 25-fold). Avanafil also showed excellent selectivity against all other phosphodiesterases. After intravenous administration in anesthetized dogs the 200% effective dose of avanafil and sildenafil on the penile tumescence was 37.5 and 34.6 μg/kg, respectively. After intraduodenal administration the 200% effective dose of avanafil and sildenafil on tumescence was 151.7 and 79.0 μg/kg at the peak time, respectively. Time to peak response with avanafil and sildenafil was 10 and 30 minutes, respectively, indicating a more rapid onset of avanafil.
Avanafil has a favorable phosphodiesterase-5 selectivity profile compared to that of marketed phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors. Avanafil shows excellent in vitro and in vivo potency, and fast onset of action for penile erection. Cumulative data suggest that avanafil has a promising pharmacological profile for erectile dysfunction.
The Journal of urology 06/2012; 188(2):668-74. DOI:10.1016/j.juro.2012.03.115 · 4.47 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The human malaria parasite (Plasmodium falciparum) possesses a plastid-derived organelle called the apicoplast, which is believed to employ metabolisms crucial for the parasite's survival. We cloned and studied the biochemical properties of plant-type ferredoxin (Fd) and Fd-NADP+ reductase (FNR), a redox system that potentially supplies reducing power to Fd-dependent metabolic pathways in malaria parasite apicoplasts. The recombinant P. falciparum Fd and FNR proteins were produced by synthetic genes with altered codon usages preferred in Escherichia coli. The redox potential of the Fd was shown to be considerably more positive than those of leaf-type and root-type Fds from plants, which is favourable for a presumed direction of electron flow from catabolically generated NADPH to Fd in the apicoplast. The backbone structure of P. falciparum Fd, as solved by X-ray crystallography, closely resembles those of Fds from plants, and the surface-charge distribution shows several acidic regions in common with plant Fds and some basic regions unique to this Fd. P. falciparum FNR was able to transfer electrons selectively to P. falciparum Fd in a reconstituted system of NADPH-dependent cytochrome c reduction. These results indicate that an NADPH-FNR-Fd cascade is operative in the apicoplast of human malaria parasites.
Journal of Biochemistry 04/2007; 141(3):421-8. DOI:10.1093/jb/mvm046 · 2.58 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The mitochondrion and the apicoplast of the malaria parasite, Plasmodium spp. is microscopically observed in a close proximity to each other. In this study, we tested the suitability of two different separation techniques--Percoll density gradient centrifugation and fluorescence-activated organelle sorting--for improving the purity of mitochondria isolated from the crude organelle preparation of Plasmodium falciparum. To our surprise, the apicoplast was inseparable from the plasmodial mitochondrion by each method. This implies these two plasmodial organelles are bound each other. This is the first experimental evidence of a physical binding between the two organelles in Plasmodium.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Parasites have exploited unique energy metabolic pathways as adaptations to the natural host habitat. In fact, the respiratory systems of parasites typically show greater diversity in electron transfer pathways than do those of host animals. These unique aspects of parasite mitochondria and related enzymes may represent promising targets for chemotherapy. Natural products have been recognized as a source of the candidates of the specific inhibitors for such parasite respiratory chains. Chalcones was recently evaluated for its antimalarial activity in vitro and in vivo. However, its target is still unclear in malaria parasites. In this study, we investigated that licochalcone A inhibited the bc1 complex (ubiquinol-cytochrome c reductase) as well as complex II (succinate ubiquinone reductase, SQR) of Plasmodium falciparum mitochondria. In particular, licochalcone A inhibits bc1 complex activity at very low concentrations. Because the property of the P. falciparum bc1 complex is different from that of the mammalian host, chalcones would be a promising candidate for a new antimalarial drug.
Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 12/2005; 1056(1):46-54. DOI:10.1196/annals.1352.037 · 4.38 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This is the first report of molecular characterization of a novel cyclic nucleotide PDE (phosphodiesterase), isolated from the human malaria parasite Plasmodium falciparum and designated PfPDE1. PfPDE1 cDNA encodes an 884-amino-acid protein, including six putative transmembrane domains in the N-terminus followed by a catalytic domain. The PfPDE1 gene is a single-copy gene consisting of two exons and a 170 bp intron. PfPDE1 transcripts were abundant in the ring form of the asexual blood stages of the parasite. The C-terminal catalytic domain of PfPDE1, produced in Escherichia coli, specifically hydrolysed cGMP with a K(m) value of 0.65 microM. Among the PDE inhibitors tested, a PDE5 inhibitor, zaprinast, was the most effective, having an IC50 value of 3.8 microM. The non-specific PDE inhibitors IBMX (3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine), theophylline and the antimalarial chloroquine had IC50 values of over 100 microM. Membrane fractions prepared from P. falciparum at mixed asexual blood stages showed potent cGMP hydrolytic activity compared with cytosolic fractions. This hydrolytic activity was sensitive to zaprinast with an IC50 value of 4.1 microM, but insensitive to IBMX and theophylline. Furthermore, an in vitro antimalarial activity assay demonstrated that zaprinast inhibited the growth of the asexual blood parasites, with an ED50 value of 35 microM. The impact of cyclic nucleotide signalling on the cellular development of this parasite has previously been discussed. Thus this enzyme is suggested to be a novel potential target for the treatment of the disease malaria.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: mRNA and protein expression profiles for three peroxiredoxins (PfTPx-1, PfTPx-2 and Pf1-Cys-Prx) and a thioredoxin (PfTrx-1) of Plasmodium falciparum during the erythrocytic stage were examined by real-time quantitative reverse transcription-PCR (RT-PCR), Western blotting and confocal laser scanning microscopy. PfTPx-1 was expressed constitutively in the parasite cytoplasm throughout the erythrocytic stage, suggesting a housekeeping role of this enzyme for control of intercellular reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the parasite. Pf1-Cys-Prx showed elevated expression during the trophozoite and early schizont stages in the parasite cytoplasm, and this profile suggested that this peroxiredoxin (Prx) detoxifies metabolism-derived ROS such as those released from heme iron. The other 2-Cys Prx, PfTPx-2, was detected in mitochondria and was expressed in both the trophozoite and schizont stages. Detection of the Prx in mitochondria is consistent with recent reports of the existence of a respiratory chain, which produces ROS, in the mitochondria of P. falciparum. PfTrx-1 showed elevated expression during the trophozoite and schizont stages in the parasite cytoplasm. Finally, expression of these antioxidant protein genes is most likely regulated at the transcriptional level because their mRNA and protein expression profiles overlapped.
Parasitology International 04/2005; 54(1):35-41. DOI:10.1016/j.parint.2004.08.005 · 1.86 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Our previous studies have suggested that two phosphodiesterase type 10A (PDE10A) variants, PDE10A1 and PDE10A2 transcripts, are mainly expressed in humans and that PDE10A2 and PDE10A3 transcripts are major variants in rats. In the present study, immunoblot analysis demonstrated that PDE10A proteins, especially PDE10A2, are more abundant in membrane fractions than in cytosolic fractions of rat striatum. Recombinant PDE10A1 and PDE10A3 were produced only in cytosolic fractions of transfected PC12h cells. By contrast, recombinant PDE10A2 was present mainly in membrane fractions. This finding agreed well with the result of subcellular fractionation of PDE10A in rat striatum. Immunocytochemical analysis showed that PDE10A2 was localized in the Golgi apparatus of transfected PC12h cells. PDE10A2 was phosphorylated by cAMP-dependent protein kinase (PKA) at Thr16. Interestingly, recombinant protein of wild-type PDE10A2, but not PDE10A2 mutant with an Ala replacement at Thr16, was distributed to cytosolic fractions by co-transfection with a plasmid encoding the catalytic subunit of PKA. A PDE10A2 mutant with Glu substitution at Thr16, which can be a mimic of phosphorylation, was localized in the cytosolic fractions of transfected PC12h cells. These observations implied that phosphorylation of PDE10A2 at Thr16 by PKA caused alteration of subcellular localization of PDE10A2 from the Golgi apparatus to cytosol. It is hypothesized that cAMP signaling in the Golgi area and the cytosol in neurons is controlled through alteration of subcellular localization of PDE10A brought by activation of PKA in response to intracellular elevations of cAMP.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cyclic nucleotide phosphodiestease (PDE) type 8 is categorized into a family of 3-isobutyl-1-methylxanthine-insensitive PDE hydrolyzing cAMP with high affinity. We have isolated cDNAs encoding rat PDE8A and PDE8B from brain and testis, respectively. The sequence analysis demonstrated that rat PDE8A was a protein of 823 amino acid residues. Rat PDE8B protein was predicted as an N-terminal truncated form of 760 amino acid residues. Both of rat PDE8 proteins include REC, PAS and catalytic PDE domains. Tissue-specific expression patterns of rat PDE8A and PDE8B transcripts were demonstrated by Northern blot analysis. Rat PDE8A transcripts were rich in the liver and testis, and those of rat PDE8B were particularly abundant in the brain and were not expressed in the thyroid gland, while human thyroid gland contains PDE8B transcripts at a high level. Rat PDE8B transcripts were found in all brain regions other than cerebellum and shown to exist in the neuronal cells in in situ hybridization. Mouse PDE8B1 sequence was also identified by a database search and sequence alignment, revealing a protein of 885 amino acid residues, which is 99% and 96% identical to rat and human PDE8B1, respectively. As well as rat PDE8B, expression of mouse PDE8B transcripts was not confined to the thyroid gland. Species-dependent tissue expression pattern was quite unique features of PDE8B.