PEDF Prevents Mitochondrial Function Decay and ER Stress Induced by Rotenone in Aging RPE Cells

Front Biosci (Landmark Ed). 2023 Nov 29;28(11):319. doi: 10.31083/j.fbl2811319.

Abstract

Background: Neurodegenerative diseases, including age-related macular degeneration (AMD), may be linked to mitochondrial dysfunction and endoplasmic reticulum (ER) stress. We examined whether Pigment epithelium-derived factor (PEDF) could prevent changes in the structure and function of these organelles by accelerating by rotenone (ROT), a mitochondrial inhibitor, in human retinal pigment epithelium (RPE) cells of chronological age.

Methods: RPE cells from 9-20, 50-55, 60-70, and >70-year-old donors were isolated, grown as primary cultures, harvested, and treated with ROT and PEDF for electron microscope (EM), western blot analysis, and polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Reactive oxygen species (ROS) and cytoplasmic calcium [Ca2+]c and mitochondrial calcium [Ca2+]m levels were measured by flow cytometry using 2',7'-dichlorodihydrofluorescin diacetate (H2-DCF-DA), fluo-3/AM, and Rhod-2/AM, and ATP levels were measured using a luciferin/luciferase-based assay. Mitochondrial membrane potential (ΔΨm) was detected using 5,5',6,6'-tetrachloro1,1',3,3'-tetraethylbenzimid azolocarbocyanine iodide (JC-1), and susceptibility of the cells to ROT toxicity and PEDF-protective effect was determined by propidium iodide (PI) staining and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) assay. The expression of ER stress-related genes was detected using real-time (RT)-PCR.

Results: We observed decay in the mitochondria of aged RPE cells, including matrix abnormalities, elongation, loss of cristae, and disruption of membrane integrity after ROT treatment. We also observed lower [Ca2+]c, higher ROS and [Ca2+]m levels, decreased ΔΨm after ROT treatment, and greater susceptibility to ROT toxicity in aged RPE cells. PEDF can protect the cristae and integrity of the mitochondrial membrane, increase ATP levels and ΔΨm, and lower ROS, [Ca2+]c, and [Ca2+]m in aged RPE cells induced by ROT. In addition, there was an increase in RDH expression in RPE cells with increasing age after PEDF treatment. Similarly, PEDF decreased the expression of ROT-induced ER stress-related genes.

Conclusions: Our study provides evidence that PEDF can reduce bioenergetic deficiencies, mitochondrial decay, and ER stress in aging RPE, a condition that may trigger the onset of retinal diseases such as AMD.

Keywords: Ca2+; PEDF; ROS; RPE cells; mitochondria; rotenone.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphate / metabolism
  • Aged
  • Calcium* / metabolism
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Humans
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Reactive Oxygen Species / metabolism
  • Rotenone* / metabolism
  • Rotenone* / toxicity

Substances

  • pigment epithelium-derived factor
  • Reactive Oxygen Species
  • Rotenone
  • Calcium
  • Adenosine Triphosphate