DOI: 10.1007/s12640-017-9732-y Pages: 264-275

Disruption of Energy Transfer and Redox Status by Sulfite in Hippocampus, Striatum, and Cerebellum of Developing Rats

1. Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciências Biológicas: Bioquímica, Instituto de Ciências Básicas da Saúde

2. Universidade Federal de Rio Grande do Sul, Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ciências Biológicas: Bioquímica, Departamento de Bioquímica, Instituto de Ciências Básicas da Saúde

3. Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre, Serviço de Genética Médica

Correspondence to:
Guilhian Leipnitz
Tel: +55 51 3308-5560



Patients with sulfite oxidase (SO) deficiency present severe brain abnormalities, whose pathophysiology is not yet elucidated. We evaluated the effects of sulfite and thiosulfate, metabolites accumulated in SO deficiency, on creatine kinase (CK) activity, mitochondrial respiration and redox status in hippocampus, striatum and cerebellum of developing rats. Our in vitro results showed that sulfite and thiosulfate decreased CK activity, whereas sulfite also increased malondialdehyde (MDA) levels in all brain structures evaluated. Sulfite further diminished mitochondrial respiration and increased DCFH oxidation and hydrogen peroxide production in hippocampus. Sulfite-induced CK activity decrease was prevented by melatonin (MEL), resveratrol (RSV), and dithiothreitol while increase of MDA levels was prevented by MEL and RSV. Regarding the antioxidant system, sulfite increased glutathione concentrations in hippocampus and striatum. In addition, sulfite decreased the activities of glutathione peroxidase in all brain structures, of glutathione S-transferase in hippocampus and cerebellum, and of glutathione reductase in cerebellum. In vivo experiments performed with intrahippocampal administration of sulfite demonstrated that this metabolite increased superoxide dismutase activity without altering other biochemical parameters in rat hippocampus. Our data suggest that impairment of energy metabolism and redox status may be important pathomechanisms involved in brain damage observed in individuals with SO deficiency.

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  • Accepted: Apr 4, 2017
  • Online: Apr 17, 2017
  • Revised: Feb 19, 2017

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