Collect. Czech. Chem. Commun. 1980, 45, 641-652

Mechanism of inhibition of succinate oxidase by products of oxidation of o-dihydroxycoumarins

Petr Zbořil

Department of Biochemistry, Purkyně University, 611 37 Brno


Semiquinone is an intermediary product of the oxidation of daphnetin (7,8-dihydroxycoumarin) and esculetin (6,7-dihydroxycoumarin) by diphenol oxidase; its concentration rapidly decreases. When the oxidation is effected by ferricytochrome c, the concentration of the semiquinone remains practically constant for a long period. Similarly, the ability of the products of daphnetin oxidation by diphenol oxidase to inhibit succinate oxidase activity in mitochondrial fragments rapidly decreases with time; the decrease is considerably slower in the case of cytochrome c. The inhibitory activity of the product decreases with time also during esculetin oxidation by ferricyanide. This indicates that the inhibitory effects must be ascribed predominantly to the semiquinone, the quinone is less efficient. The inhibition of succinate oxidase or succinate dehydrogenase was strongly decreased when the enzyme preparation of Keilin and Hartree was incubated with esculetin and ferricyanide in the presence of KCN or under anaerobic conditions. This demonstrates that the reaction of the inhibitor with the enzyme either involves subsequent oxidations or that the inhibitor preferentially reacts with the oxidized form of the sensitive component of the respiratory chain. The second alternative is very little probable since there is no correlation between the degree of inhibition and the binding of the inhibitor to mitochondrial fragments.