The metabolic control analysis was applied to digitonin-permeabilized HepG2 cell line to assess the flux control exerted by cytochrome c oxidase on the mitochondrial respiration. Experimental conditions eliciting different energy/respiratory states in mitochondria were settled. The results obtained show that the mitochondrial electrochemical potential accompanies a depressing effect on the control coefficient exhibited by the cytochrome c oxidase. Both the components of the protonmotive force, i.e. the voltage (ΔΨ m) and the proton (ΔpHm) gradient, displayed a similar effect. Quantitative estimation of the ΔΨm unveiled that the voltage-dependent effect on the control coefficient of cytochrome c oxidase takes place sharply in a narrow range of membrane potential from 170-180 to 200-210 mV consistent with the physiologic transition from state 3 to state 4 of respiration. Extension of the metabolic flux control analysis to the NADH dehydrogenase and bc1 complexes of the mitochondrial respiratory chain resulted in a similar effect. A mechanistic model is put forward whereby the respiratory chain complexes are proposed to exist in a voltage-mediated threshold-controlled dynamic equilibrium between supercomplexed and isolated states. © 2011 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
Quarato, G., Piccoli, C., Scrima, R., & Capitanio, N. (2011). Variation of flux control coefficient of cytochrome c oxidase and of the other respiratory chain complexes at different values of protonmotive force occurs by a threshold mechanism. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta - Bioenergetics, 1807(9), 1114–1124. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbabio.2011.04.001