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Catechol and aldehyde moieties of 3,4-dihydroxyphenylacetaldehyde contribute to tyrosine hydroxylase inhibition and neurotoxicity

  • Published on July 30, 2012
  • Drug Metabolism
  • Non-CYP Enzymes
  • Publications

Lydia M. Vermeer , Virginia R. Florang , Jonathan A. Doorn

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is a progressive neurodegenerative disorder which leads to the selective loss of dopaminergic neurons. This causes a decrease in the important neurotransmitter dopamine (DA), which is essential for coordinated movement. Previous studies have implicated the monoamine oxidase metabolite of DA, 3,4-dihydroxphenylacetaldehyde (DOPAL), in the pathogenesis of PD and have shown it to be a reactive intermediate capable of protein modification. DOPAL also has demonstrated the ability to cause mitochondrial dysfunction and lead to significant inhibition of the rate-limiting enzyme in DA synthesis, tyrosine hydroxylase (TH). The current study was undertaken to investigate four analogs of DOPAL, including a novel nitrile analog, to determine how the structure of DOPAL is related to its toxicity and inhibition of TH. Both mitochondrial function and inhibition of TH in cell lysate were investigated. Furthermore, a novel whole cell assay was designed to determine the consequence to enzyme action when DOPAL levels were elevated. The results presented here demonstrate that changes to DOPAL structure lead to a decrease in toxicity and inhibition of enzyme activity as compared to the parent compound. Furthermore, the production of superoxide anion but not hydrogen peroxide increased in the presence of elevated DOPAL. These results reveal the toxicity of DOPAL and demonstrate that both the catechol and aldehyde are required to potently inhibit TH activity.

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