This article provides an updated overview of the plethora of complex I inhibitors. The inhibitors are presented within the broad categories of natural and commercial compounds and their potency is related to that of rotenone, the classical inhibitor of complex I. Among commercial products, particular attention is dedicated to inhibitors of pharmacological or toxicological relevance. The compounds that inhibit the NADH-ubiquinone reductase activity of complex I are classified according to three fundamental types of action on the basis of available evidence and recent insights: type A are antagonists of the ubiquinone substrate, type B displace the ubisemiquinone intermediate, and type C are antagonists of the ubiquinol product.
Copyright 1998 Elsevier Science B.V.