Cytochrome oxidase activity in hippocampal synaptic mitochondria during aging: A quantitative cytochemical investigation

Carlo Bertoni-Freddari, Patrizia Fattoretti, Belinda Giorgetti, Moreno Solazzi, Marta Balietti, Tiziana Casoli, Giuseppina Di Stefano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Synaptic mitochondria, cytochemically positive to cytochrome oxidase (COX) activity, were investigated by morphometric methods in the hippocampal dentate gyrus of adult and old rats. The number of mitochondria/ μm3 of tissue (Nv), the volume fraction occupied by mitochondria/μm3 of tissue (Vv), the average mitochondrial volume (V), the longer mitochondrial diameter (Fmax), and the ratio R:mitochondrial area/overall area of the cytochemical precipitate due to COX activity were measured on COX-positive organelles. In old animals, Nv, Vv, V, and Fmax increased at a not significant extent; R was not significantly decreased. The complement (%) of longer organelles was higher in old animals. COX activity is currently considered an endogenous marker of neuronal oxidative metabolism; thus, although our findings refer to the discrete subpopulation of COX-positive organelles located at synaptic terminals, they support that changes of mitochondrial ultrastructure and metabolic competence may contribute to the age-related alterations of neuronal performances.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-36
Number of pages4
JournalAnnals of the New York Academy of Sciences
Volume1019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2004

Keywords

  • Cytochrome oxidase activity
  • Hippocampus
  • Mitochondrial metabolic competence
  • Morphometry
  • Synaptic mitochondria

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)

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