Myocardial ischemia damages the electron transport chain and augments cardiomyocyte death during reperfusion. To understand the relationship between ischemic mitochondrial damage and mitochondrial-driven cell death, the isolated perfused heart underwent global stop-flow ischemia with and without mitochondrial protection by reversible blockade of electron transport. Ischemic damage to electron transport depleted bcl-2 content and favored mitochondrial permeability transition (MPT). Reversible blockade of electron transport preserved bcl-2 content and attenuated calcium-stimulated mitochondrial swelling. Thus, the damaged electron transport chain leads to bcl-2 depletion and MPT opening. Chemical inhibition of bcl-2 with HA14-1 also dramatically increased mitochondrial swelling, augmented by exogenous H 2O 2 stress, indicating that bcl-2 depleted mitochondria are poised to undergo MPT during the enhanced oxidative stress of reperfusion.
Chen, Q., & Lesnefsky, E. J. (2011). Blockade of electron transport during ischemia preserves bcl-2 and inhibits opening of the mitochondrial permeability transition pore. FEBS Letters, 585(6), 921–926. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.febslet.2011.02.029