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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Quantitation of the efflux of acylcarnitines from rat heart, brain, and liver mitochondria.

The efflux of individual short-chain and medium-chain acylcarnitines from rat liver, heart, and brain mitochondria metabolizing several substrates has been measured. The acylcarnitine efflux profiles depend on the substrate, the source of mitochondria, and the incubation conditions. The largest amount of any acylcarnitine effluxing per mg of protein was acetylcarnitine produced by heart mitochondria from pyruvate. This efflux of acetylcarnitine from heart mitochondria is almost 5 times greater with 1 mM than 0.2 mM carnitine. Apparently the acetyl-CoA generated from pyruvate by pyruvate dehydrogenase is very accessible to carnitine acetyltransferase. Very little acetylcarnitine effluxes from heart mitochondria when octanoate is the substrate except in the presence of malonate. Acetylcarnitine production from some substrates peaks and then declines, indicating uptake and utilization. The unequivocal demonstration that considerable amounts of propionylcarnitine or isobutyrylcarnitine efflux from heart mitochondria metabolizing alpha-ketoisovalerate and alpha-keto-beta-methylvalerate provides evidence for a role (via removal of non-metabolizable propionyl-CoA or slowly metabolizable acyl-CoAs) for carnitine in tissues which have limited capacity to metabolize propionyl-CoA. These results also show propionyl-CoA must be formed during the metabolism of alpha-ketoisovalerate and that extra-mitochondrial free carnitine rapidly interacts with matrix short-chain aliphatic acyl-CoA generated from alpha-keto acids of branched-chain amino acids and pyruvate in the presence and absence of malate.[1]


  1. Quantitation of the efflux of acylcarnitines from rat heart, brain, and liver mitochondria. Lysiak, W., Toth, P.P., Suelter, C.H., Bieber, L.L. J. Biol. Chem. (1986) [Pubmed]
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