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Hydrogen Sulfide, an Endogenous Stimulator of Mitochondrial Function in Cancer Cells

Chair of Pharmacology, Section of Medicine, University of Fribourg, CH-1700 Fribourg, Switzerland
Cells 2021, 10(2), 220; https://doi.org/10.3390/cells10020220
Received: 1 January 2021 / Revised: 20 January 2021 / Accepted: 21 January 2021 / Published: 22 January 2021
Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has a long history as toxic gas and environmental hazard; inhibition of cytochrome c oxidase (mitochondrial Complex IV) is viewed as a primary mode of its cytotoxic action. However, studies conducted over the last two decades unveiled multiple biological regulatory roles of H2S as an endogenously produced mammalian gaseous transmitter. Cystathionine γ-lyase (CSE), cystathionine β-synthase (CBS) and 3-mercaptopyruvate sulfurtransferase (3-MST) are currently viewed as the principal mammalian H2S-generating enzymes. In contrast to its inhibitory (toxicological) mitochondrial effects, at lower (physiological) concentrations, H2S serves as a stimulator of electron transport in mammalian mitochondria, by acting as an electron donor—with sulfide:quinone oxidoreductase (SQR) being the immediate electron acceptor. The mitochondrial roles of H2S are significant in various cancer cells, many of which exhibit high expression and partial mitochondrial localization of various H2S producing enzymes. In addition to the stimulation of mitochondrial ATP production, the roles of endogenous H2S in cancer cells include the maintenance of mitochondrial organization (protection against mitochondrial fission) and the maintenance of mitochondrial DNA repair (via the stimulation of the assembly of mitochondrial DNA repair complexes). The current article overviews the state-of-the-art knowledge regarding the mitochondrial functions of endogenously produced H2S in cancer cells. View Full-Text
Keywords: bioenergetics; ATP; gasotransmitters; DNA repair bioenergetics; ATP; gasotransmitters; DNA repair
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MDPI and ACS Style

Szabo, C. Hydrogen Sulfide, an Endogenous Stimulator of Mitochondrial Function in Cancer Cells. Cells 2021, 10, 220. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells10020220

AMA Style

Szabo C. Hydrogen Sulfide, an Endogenous Stimulator of Mitochondrial Function in Cancer Cells. Cells. 2021; 10(2):220. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells10020220

Chicago/Turabian Style

Szabo, Csaba. 2021. "Hydrogen Sulfide, an Endogenous Stimulator of Mitochondrial Function in Cancer Cells" Cells 10, no. 2: 220. https://doi.org/10.3390/cells10020220

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