Nitration of specific tyrosines in FoF1 ATP synthase and activity loss in aging

Virginia Haynes, Nathaniel J. Traaseth, Sarah Elfering, Yasuko Fujisawa, Cecilia Giulivi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


It has been reported that C-nitration of proteins occurs under nitrative/oxidative stress; however, its role in pathophysiological situations is not fully understood. In this study, we determined that nitration of Tyr 345 and Tyr368 in the β-subunit of the mitochondrial FoF1-ATPase is a major target for nitrative stress in rat liver under in vivo conditions. The chemical characteristics of these Tyr make them suitable for a facilitated nitration (solvent accessibility, consensus sequence, and pKa). Moreover, β-subunit nitration increased significantly with the age of the rats (from 4 to 80 weeks old) and correlated with decreased ATP hydrolysis and synthesis rates. Although its affinity for ATP binding was unchanged, maximal ATPase activity decreased between young and old rats by a factor of two. These changes directly impacted the available ATP concentration in vivo, and it was expected that they would affect multiple cellular ATP-dependent processes. For instance, at least 50% of available [ATP] in the liver of older rats would have to be committed to sustain maximal Na +-K+-ATPase activity, whereas only 30% would be required for young rats. If this requirement was not fulfilled, the osmoregulation and Na+-nutrient cotransport in liver of older rats would be compromised. On the basis of our studies, we propose that targeted nitration of the β-subunit is an early marker for nitrative stress and aging.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)E978-E987
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2010


  • Adenosine 5′-triphosphatase
  • Adenosine 5′-triphosphate
  • Bioenergetics
  • Biomarker
  • Mitochondria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Physiology
  • Physiology (medical)


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