Defining the mechanism of action of S1QELs, specific suppressors of superoxide production in the quinone-reaction site in mitochondrial complex ISite-specific suppressors of superoxide production (named S1QELs) in the quinone-reaction site in mitochondrial respiratory complex I during reverse electron transfer have been previously reported; however, their mechanism of action remains elusive. Using bovine heart submitochondrial particles, we herein investigated the effects of S1QELs on complex I functions. We found that the inhibitory effects of S1QELs on complex I are distinctly different from those of other known quinone-site inhibitors.
Exploring the quinone/inhibitor-binding pocket in mitochondrial respiratory complex I by chemical biology approachesNADH–quinone oxidoreductase (respiratory complex I) couples NADH-to-quinone electron transfer to the translocation of protons across the membrane. Even though the architecture of the quinone-access channel in the enzyme has been modeled by X-ray crystallography and cryo-EM, conflicting findings raise the question whether the models fully reflect physiologically relevant states present throughout the catalytic cycle. To gain further insights into the structural features of the binding pocket for quinone/inhibitor, we performed chemical biology experiments using bovine heart sub-mitochondrial particles.