Abstract Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) is associated with an increase of premature appearance of several disorders such as cardiac complications. Thus, we test the hypothesis that a combination of a high fat diet (HFD) and low doses of streptozotocin (STZ) recapitulate a suitable mice model of T2DM to study the cardiac mitochondrial disturbances induced by this disease. Animals were divided in 2 groups: the T2DM group was given a HFD and injected with 2 low doses of STZ, while the CNTRL group was given a standard chow and a buffer solution. The combination of HFD and STZ recapitulate the T2DM metabolic profile showing higher blood glucose levels in T2DM mice when compared to CNTRL, and also, insulin resistance. The kidney structure/function was preserved. Regarding cardiac mitochondrial function, in all phosphorylative states, the cardiac mitochondria from T2DM mice presented reduced oxygen fluxes when compared to CNTRL mice. Also, mitochondria from T2DM mice showed decreased citrate synthase activity and lower protein content of mitochondrial complexes. Our results show that in this non-obese T2DM model, which recapitulates the classical metabolic alterations, mitochondrial function is impaired and provides a useful model to deepen study the mechanisms underlying these alterations.
There exists an extensive literature on the possible roles of minerals in the prebiotic stages of the chemical evolution of life (Bernal 1951, Cairns-Smith 1982, Wächtershäuser 1992, Vieyra et al. 1995, Tessis et al. 1999, see Lahav (1994) for a review). Among the original proposals, minerals have been considered in: (a) processes that would discriminate molecular chirality; (b) condensation reactions of biomolecular precursors; (c) prebiotic catalysis; (d) biochemical templates; and (e) autocatalytic metabolism. In this communication it is emphazised the complex properties of both surface reactions and interfaces between minerals and aqueous solutions simulating Archean scenarios. The properties of pyrite surface net charge and of its interface with a solution simulating primitive seawater are discussed and their implications to the autocatalytic model (Wächtershäuser 1988a 1992) are presented in order to demonstrate their relevance. The proposed roles of iron-sulfide minerals (mainly pyrite) as physical support for primitive bidimensional metabolism and chiral discriminator (Wächtershäuser 1988a, Huber & Wächtershäuser 1998) are revised. It is shown that: (a) the net surface charge can be modulated by the pyrite-aqueous solution interface; (b) mononucleotides attachment to pyrite require a cationic bridge; and (c) direct absorption of acetate - a molecule proposed as carbon source in primitive aqueous environments - also modulates the interface properties and would have masked pyrite's bulk structure. These results indicate that physicochemical changes of mineral surfaces - caused by environments simulating Archean aqueous scenarios - should be taken into account in the proposals of mineral prebiotic roles.