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Open AccessArticle

A Natural mtDNA Polymorphism in Complex III Is a Modifier of Healthspan in Mice

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Luebeck Institute of Experimental Dermatology, University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Luebeck Institute of Experimental Dermatology and Institute for Cardiogenetics, University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Center of Brain, Behavior & Metabolism, University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Institute of Human Nutrition and Food Science, University of Kiel, 24098 Kiel, Germany
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Department of Infectious Disease and Microbiology, University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Institute of Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Luebeck Institute of Experimental Dermatology, Institute for Cardiogenetics and Center for research of inflammatory skin disease (CRIS), University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Luebeck Institute of Experimental Dermatology and Center for research of inflammatory skin disease (CRIS), University of Luebeck, 23562 Luebeck, Germany
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(9), 2359; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20092359
Received: 18 February 2019 / Revised: 3 May 2019 / Accepted: 9 May 2019 / Published: 13 May 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue mtDNA and Mitochondrial Stress Signaling in Human Diseases)
In this study, we provide experimental evidence that a maternally inherited polymorphism in the mitochondrial cytochrome b gene (mt-Cytb; m.15124A>G, Ile-Val) in mitochondrial complex III resulted in middle-aged obesity and higher susceptibility to diet-induced obesity, as well as age-related inflammatory disease, e.g., ulcerative dermatitis, in mice. As a consequence of the gene variation, we observed alterations in body composition, metabolism and mitochondrial functions, i.e., increased mitochondrial oxygen consumption rate and higher levels of reactive oxygen species, as well as in the commensal bacterial composition in the gut, with higher abundance of Proteobacteria in mice carrying the variant. These observations are in line with the previously described links of the mitochondrial complex III gene with obesity and metabolic diseases in humans. Given that these functional changes by the G variant at m.15124 in the mt-Cytb are already present in young mice that were kept under normal condition, it is plausible that the m.15124A>G variant is a disease susceptibility modifier to the diseases induced by additional stressors, i.e., dietary and/or aging stress, and that the variant results in the higher incidence of clinical diseases presentation in C57BL/6J-mt129S1/SvlmJ than C57BL/6J mice. Thus, mtDNA variants could be potential biomarkers to evaluate the healthspan. View Full-Text
Keywords: mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms; conplastic mouse strains; complex III; mitochondrially encoded cytochrome b gene; mt-Cytb; age-related diseases; middle-aged obesity; healthspan; gut microbiota mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms; conplastic mouse strains; complex III; mitochondrially encoded cytochrome b gene; mt-Cytb; age-related diseases; middle-aged obesity; healthspan; gut microbiota
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Hirose, M.; Künstner, A.; Schilf, P.; Tietjen, A.K.; Jöhren, O.; Huebbe, P.; Rimbach, G.; Rupp, J.; Schwaninger, M.; Busch, H.; Ibrahim, S.M. A Natural mtDNA Polymorphism in Complex III Is a Modifier of Healthspan in Mice. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20, 2359.

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