Scientific article

Inhibition of complex I by isoquinoline derivatives structurally related to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP)

Published inBiochemical pharmacology, vol. 50, no. 11, p. 1903-1911
Publication date1995

Mitochondrial respiratory failure secondary to complex I inhibition may contribute to the neurodegenerative process underlying nigral cell death in Parkinson's disease (PD). Isoquinoline derivatives structurally related to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP) or 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium (MPP+) may be inhibitors of complex I, and have been implicated in the cause of PD as endogenous neurotoxins. To determine the potency and structural requirements of isoquinoline derivatives to inhibit mitochondrial function, we examined the effects of 22 neutral and quaternary compounds from three classes of isoquinoline derivatives (11 isoquinolines, 2 dihydroisoquinolines, and 9 1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinolines) and MPP+ on the enzymes of the respiratory chain in mitochondrial fragments from rat forebrain. With the exception of norsalsolinol and N,n-propylisoquinolinium, all compounds inhibited complex I in a time-independent, but concentration-dependent manner, with IC50s ranging from 0.36-22 mM. Several isoquinoline derivatives were more potent inhibitors of complex I than 1-methyl-4-phenylpyridinium ion (MPP+) (IC50 = 4.1 mM), the most active being N-methyl-6-methoxy-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline (IC50 = 0.36 mM) and 6-methoxy-1,2,3,4-tetrahydroisoquinoline (IC50 = 0.38 mM). 1,2,3,4-Tetrahydroisoquinoline was the least potent complex I inhibitor (IC50 approximately 22 mM). At 10 mM, only isoquinoline (23.1%), 6,7-dimethoxyisoquinoline (89.6%), and N-methylsalsolinol (34.8%) inhibited (P < 0.05) complex II-III, but none of the isoquinoline derivatives inhibited complex IV. There were no clear structure-activity relationships among the three classes of isoquinoline derivatives studied, but lipophilicity appears to be important for complex I inhibition. The effects of isoquinoline derivatives on mitochondrial function are similar to those of MPTP/MPP+, so respiratory inhibition may underlie their reported neurotoxicity.

  • Animals
  • Brain/drug effects/enzymology
  • Dopamine Agents/*pharmacology
  • Electron Transport Complex II
  • Electron Transport Complex III/antagonists & inhibitors
  • Isoquinolines/chemical synthesis/*pharmacology
  • Male
  • Mitochondria/drug effects/enzymology
  • Multienzyme Complexes/antagonists & inhibitors
  • NAD(P)H Dehydrogenase (Quinone)/*antagonists & inhibitors
  • Oxidoreductases/antagonists & inhibitors
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Succinate Dehydrogenase/antagonists & inhibitors
  • Tetrahydroisoquinolines
Affiliation Not a UNIGE publication
Citation (ISO format)
MCNAUGHT, K. S. et al. Inhibition of complex I by isoquinoline derivatives structurally related to 1-methyl-4-phenyl-1,2,3,6-tetrahydropyridine (MPTP). In: Biochemical pharmacology, 1995, vol. 50, n° 11, p. 1903–1911.
Updates (1)
ISSN of the journal0006-2952

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