The ratio of C26:0/C22:0 fatty acids in patient lipids is widely accepted as a critical clinical criterion of peroxisomal diseases, such as Zellweger syndrome and X-linked adrenoleukodystrophy (X-ALD). However, phospholipid molecular species with very long chain fatty acids (VLCFA) have not been precisely characterized. In the present study, the structures of such molecules in fibroblasts of Zellweger syndrome and X-ALD were examined using LC-ESI-MS/MS analysis. In fibroblasts from Zellweger patients, a large number of VLCFA-containing molecular species were detected in several phospholipid classes as well as neutral lipids, including triacylglycerol and cholesteryl esters. Among these lipids, phosphatidylcholine showed the most diversity in the structures of VLCFA-containing molecular species. Some VLCFA possessed longer carbon chains and/or larger number of double bonds than C26:0-fatty acid (FA). Similar VLCFA were also found in other phospholipid classes, such as phosphatidylethanolamine and phosphatidylserine. In addition, VLCFA-containing phospholipid species showed some differences among fibroblasts from Zellweger patients. It appears that phospholipids with VLCFA, with or without double bonds, as well as C26:0-FA might affect cellular functions, thus leading to the pathogenesis of peroxisomal diseases, such as Zellweger syndrome and X-ALD.
The biological activities of C(60)-bis(N,N-dimethylpyrrolidinium iodide), a water-soluble cationic fullerene derivative, on human promyeloleukaemia (HL-60) cells were investigated. The pyrrolidinium fullerene derivative showed cytotoxicity in HL-60 cells. The characteristics of apoptosis, such as DNA fragmentation and condensation of chromatin in HL-60 cells, were observed by exposure to the pyrrolidinium fullerene derivative. Caspase-3 and -8 were activated and cytochrome c was also released from mitochondria. The generation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) by the pyrrolidinium fullerene derivative was observed by DCFH-DA, a fluorescence probe for the detection of ROS. Pre-treatment with alpha-tocopherol suppressed cell death and intracellular oxidative stress caused by the pyrrolidinium fullerene derivative. The apoptotic cell death induced by the pyrrolidinium fullerene derivative was suggested to be mediated by ROS generated by the pyrrolidinium fullerene derivative.
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