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      Melatonin: A Mitochondrial Targeting Molecule Involving Mitochondrial Protection and Dynamics

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          Abstract

          Melatonin has been speculated to be mainly synthesized by mitochondria. This speculation is supported by the recent discovery that aralkylamine N-acetyltransferase/serotonin N-acetyltransferase (AANAT/SNAT) is localized in mitochondria of oocytes and the isolated mitochondria generate melatonin. We have also speculated that melatonin is a mitochondria-targeted antioxidant. It accumulates in mitochondria with high concentration against a concentration gradient. This is probably achieved by an active transportation via mitochondrial melatonin transporter(s). Melatonin protects mitochondria by scavenging reactive oxygen species (ROS), inhibiting the mitochondrial permeability transition pore (MPTP), and activating uncoupling proteins (UCPs). Thus, melatonin maintains the optimal mitochondrial membrane potential and preserves mitochondrial functions. In addition, mitochondrial biogenesis and dynamics is also regulated by melatonin. In most cases, melatonin reduces mitochondrial fission and elevates their fusion. Mitochondrial dynamics exhibit an oscillatory pattern which matches the melatonin circadian secretory rhythm in pinealeocytes and probably in other cells. Recently, melatonin has been found to promote mitophagy and improve homeostasis of mitochondria.

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          Most cited references 205

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          Oxidative Stress and Neurodegenerative Diseases: A Review of Upstream and Downstream Antioxidant Therapeutic Options

          Free radicals are common outcome of normal aerobic cellular metabolism. In-built antioxidant system of body plays its decisive role in prevention of any loss due to free radicals. However, imbalanced defense mechanism of antioxidants, overproduction or incorporation of free radicals from environment to living system leads to serious penalty leading to neuro-degeneration. Neural cells suffer functional or sensory loss in neurodegenerative diseases. Apart from several other environmental or genetic factors, oxidative stress (OS) leading to free radical attack on neural cells contributes calamitous role to neuro-degeneration. Though, oxygen is imperative for life, imbalanced metabolism and excess reactive oxygen species (ROS) generation end into a range of disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, aging and many other neural disorders. Toxicity of free radicals contributes to proteins and DNA injury, inflammation, tissue damage and subsequent cellular apoptosis. Antioxidants are now being looked upon as persuasive therapeutic against solemn neuronal loss, as they have capability to combat by neutralizing free radicals. Diet is major source of antioxidants, as well as medicinal herbs are catching attention to be commercial source of antioxidants at present. Recognition of upstream and downstream antioxidant therapy to oxidative stress has been proved an effective tool in alteration of any neuronal damage as well as free radical scavenging. Antioxidants have a wide scope to sequester metal ions involved in neuronal plaque formation to prevent oxidative stress. In addition, antioxidant therapy is vital in scavenging free radicals and ROS preventing neuronal degeneration in post-oxidative stress scenario.
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            Dynamin-related protein Drp1 is required for mitochondrial division in mammalian cells.

            Mutations in the human dynamin-related protein Drp1 cause mitochondria to form perinuclear clusters. We show here that these mitochondrial clusters consist of highly interconnected mitochondrial tubules. The increased connectivity between mitochondria indicates that the balance between mitochondrial division and fusion is shifted toward fusion. Such a shift is consistent with a block in mitochondrial division. Immunofluorescence and subcellular fractionation show that endogenous Drp1 is localized to mitochondria, which is also consistent with a role in mitochondrial division. A direct role in mitochondrial division is suggested by time-lapse photography of transfected cells, in which green fluorescent protein fused to Drp1 is concentrated in spots that mark actual mitochondrial division events. We find that purified human Drp1 can self-assemble into multimeric ring-like structures with dimensions similar to those of dynamin multimers. The structural and functional similarities between dynamin and Drp1 suggest that Drp1 wraps around the constriction points of dividing mitochondria, analogous to dynamin collars at the necks of budding vesicles. We conclude that Drp1 contributes to mitochondrial division in mammalian cells.
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              Mitochondrial dynamics and apoptosis.

              In healthy cells, mitochondria continually divide and fuse to form a dynamic interconnecting network. The molecular machinery that mediates this organelle fission and fusion is necessary to maintain mitochondrial integrity, perhaps by facilitating DNA or protein quality control. This network disintegrates during apoptosis at the time of cytochrome c release and prior to caspase activation, yielding more numerous and smaller mitochondria. Recent work shows that proteins involved in mitochondrial fission and fusion also actively participate in apoptosis induction. This review will cover the recent advances and presents competing models on how the mitochondrial fission and fusion machinery may intersect apoptosis pathways.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: Academic Editor
                Journal
                Int J Mol Sci
                Int J Mol Sci
                ijms
                International Journal of Molecular Sciences
                MDPI
                1422-0067
                16 December 2016
                December 2016
                : 17
                : 12
                Affiliations
                Department of Cell System and Anatomy, The University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, TX 78229, USA; lmanchester@ 123456stmarytx.edu (L.C.M.); qinl@ 123456uthscsa.edu (L.Q.)
                Author notes
                [* ]Correspondence: tan@ 123456uthscsa.edu (D.-X.T.); reiter@ 123456uthscsa.edu (R.J.R.); Tel.: +1-210-567-2550 (D.-X.T.); +1-210-567-3859 (R.J.R.)
                Article
                ijms-17-02124
                10.3390/ijms17122124
                5187924
                27999288
                © 2016 by the authors; licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.

                This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

                Categories
                Review

                Molecular biology

                mitochondrial dynamics, mitophagy, mitochondria, antioxidant, melatonin

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