Effect of coenzyme Q10 on the mitochondrial function of skin fibroblasts from Parkinson patients.


Winkler-Stuck K, Wiedemann FR, Wallesch CW, Kunz WS.




J Neurol Sci


Several lines of evidence suggest an impairment of mitochondrial function in the brain of patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). However, the presence of a detectable mitochondrial defect in extracerebral tissue of these patients remains a matter of dispute. Therefore, we investigated mitochondrial function in fibroblasts of 18 PD patients applying biochemical micromethods. Putative beneficial effects of coenzyme Q(10) (CoQ(10)), a potent antioxidant, on the mitochondrial function of skin fibroblast cultures were evaluated. Applying inhibitor titrations of the mitochondrial respiration to calculate flux control coefficients of respiratory chain complexes I and IV, we observed deficiencies of both complexes in cultivated skin fibroblasts of PD patients. Cultivation of fibroblasts in the presence of 5 microM CoQ(10) restored the activity of impaired respiratory chain complexes in the fibroblast cultures of 9 out of 18 PD patients. Our data support the presence of a generalised mitochondrial defect in at least a subgroup of patients with PD that can be partially ameliorated in vitro by coenzyme Q(10) treatment.