Oxidative metabolism in YAC128 mouse model of Huntington's disease

James Hamilton, Jessica J. Pellman, Tatiana Brustovetsky, Robert A. Harris, Nickolay Brustovetsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Scopus citations


Alterations in oxidative metabolism are considered to be one of the major contributors to Huntington's disease (HD) pathogenesis. However, existing data about oxidative metabolism in HD are contradictory. Here, we investigated the effect of mutant huntingtin (mHtt) on oxidative metabolismin YAC128 mice. Both mHtt and wild-type huntingtin (Htt) were associated with mitochondria and the amount of bound Htt was four-times higher than the amount of bound mHtt. Percoll gradient-purified brain synaptic and non-synaptic mitochondria as well as unpurified brain, liver and heart mitochondria, isolated from 2- and 10-month-old YAC128 mice and age-matched WT littermates had similar respiratory rates. There was no difference in mitochondrial membrane potential or ADP and ATP levels. Expression of selected nuclear-encoded mitochondrial proteins in 2- and 10-month-old YAC128 and WT mice was similar. Cultured striatal and cortical neurons from YAC128 and WT mice had similar respiratory and glycolytic activities as measured with Seahorse XF24 analyzer in medium containing 10m?glucose and 15m? pyruvate. In the medium with 2.5m? glucose, YAC128 striatal neurons had similar respiration, but slightly lower glycolytic activity. Striatal neurons had lower maximal respiration compared with cortical neurons. In vivo experiments with YAC128 and WT mice showed similar O2 consumption, CO2 release, physical activity, food consumption and fasted blood glucose. However, YAC128 mice were heavier and had more body fat compared with WT mice. Overall, our data argue against respiratory deficiency in YAC128 mice and, consequently, suggest that mitochondrial respiratory dysfunction is not essential for HD pathogenesis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4862-4878
Number of pages17
JournalHuman molecular genetics
Issue number17
StatePublished - 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)

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