We know that healthy mitochondria, the energy factories of cells, rely on proper reduction and oxidation to keep us converting food to energy and staving off mitochondrial pathologies. Any number of compounds have been created to try and keep that going as we age. They determine whether cells live or die and they regulate inflammation.
One new compound, (AP39), targets delivery of very small amounts of hydrogen sulfide inside cells. Hydrogen sulfide. H2S. Sewer gas. It's that fart smell. The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety&Health Administration (OSHA) says it is highly toxic and dangerous because it is flammable and explosive, along with causing rapid unconsciousness at higher levels. But it's natural, so that will make alternative medicine proponents happy; one man's herb is another man's fart smell.
At the right tiny dosage, the AP39 hydrogen sulfide protects mitochondria – the “powerhouse” of cells, which drive energy production in blood vessel cells. Preventing or reversing mitochondrial damage is a key strategy for treatments of a variety of conditions such as stroke, heart failure, diabetes and arthritis, dementia and aging.
Hydrogen sulfide is naturally produced in the body and could have significant implications for future therapies for a variety of diseases. Credit: University of Exeter.
Professor Matt Whiteman, of the University of Exeter Medical School, said, “When cells become stressed by disease, they draw in enzymes to generate minute quantities of hydrogen sulfide. This keeps the mitochondria ticking over and allows cells to live. If this doesn’t happen, the cells die and lose the ability to regulate survival and control inflammation. We have exploited this natural process by making a compound, called AP39, which slowly delivers very small amounts of this gas specifically to the mitochondria. Our results indicate that if stressed cells are treated with AP39, mitochondria are protected and cells stay alive.”
Dr. Mark Wood added, “Although hydrogen sulfide is well known as a pungent, foul-smelling gas in rotten eggs and flatulence, it is naturally produced in the body and could in fact be a healthcare hero with significant implications for future therapies for a variety of diseases.”
The research is being conducted in several models of disease. The results are pre-clinical but in models of cardiovascular disease,more than 80 percent of the powerhouse mitochondria cells survive under otherwise highly destructive conditions, if the AP39 is administered. They also found that the compound selectively prevented mitochondrial DNA in mitochondria. Once damaged, this DNA cannot be repaired, leaving individuals more vulnerable to disease symptoms.
Early indications in small-scale studies, presented at this year’s 3rd International Conference on Hydrogen Sulfide in Biology and Medicine in Kyoto, also show that in high blood pressure, AP39 reversed blood vessel stiffening and lowered blood pressure. It also dramatically improved chances of survival after a heart attack by slowing the heartbeat, improving its efficiency.
Dads, save a life, be a hydrogen sulfide donor. It will also make your kids giggle. Moms, stay classy instead.
Citation: Sophie Le Trionnaire, Alexis Perry, Bartosz Szczesny, Csaba Szabo, Paul G. Winyard, Jacqueline L. Whatmore, Mark E. Wood and Matthew Whiteman , 'The synthesis and functional evaluation of a mitochondria-targeted hydrogen sulfide donor, (10-oxo-10-(4-(3-thioxo-3H-1,2-dithiol-5-yl)phenoxy)decyl)triphenylphosphonium bromide (AP39)', Med. Chem. Commun., 2014,5, 728-736 DOI: 10.1039/C3MD00323J. Source: University of Exeter.
- PHYSICAL SCIENCES
- EARTH SCIENCES
- LIFE SCIENCES
- SOCIAL SCIENCES
Subscribe to the newsletter
Stay in touch with the scientific world!
Know Science And Want To Write?
- Sexual Fantasies: Threesomes Are Normal, Golden Showers Not So Much
- Ghost Light From Dead Galaxies - A Hubble Halloween
- US Wildlife Bans On GMOs And Neonics Lack Transparency And Scientific Rationale
- The Vampire Deer Of Afghanistan
- Is It Possible To Build A Spacesuit Or Spaceship To Travel Through The Sun With Future Tech? - Just For Fun.
- Aging Brains Aren't Necessarily Declining Brains
- Okay With Disgusting Images? You Vote This Way 95 Percent Of The Time
- "Do you work for Hank? Or do you just parrot his line of bullshit, and try to legitimize it with..."
- "Yes, that is why I wrote it that way, precisely because they are all watching the thinker...."
- "Sort of. As foreign countries go I have most affection for Great Britain. I have much..."
- "Having a go at us British again? I could say, continental drift has been a GOOD THING, but..."
- Two-faced anti-GMO groups: Block crop and food innovations then claim Big Ag prevents GMO innovations
- Why support erodes for GMO labeling (Hint: It’s not because of spending by Big Ag)
- Genetic “hall of mirrors” with large palindromes, yet smaller: What’s mighty about the mouse
- Gut bacteria an easy scapegoat for disease, but connections hard to prove
- Vermont Rube Goldberg-like GMO labeling law exempts GMO filled natural supplements
- Downside to GMOs: Yields have become so good, they exceed processing capacity
- Cancer cell fingerprints in the blood may speed up childhood cancer diagnosis
- Study of Chile earthquake finds new rock structure that affects earthquake rupture
- Tracking a gigantic sunspot across the Sun
- Massive geographic change may have triggered explosion of animal life
- Scientists replicate the tide with two buckets, aquarium tubing, and a pump
Books By Writers Here