Early Life Supraphysiological Levels of Oxygen Exposure Permanently Impairs Hippocampal Mitochondrial Function

Academic Article


  • Preterm infants requiring prolonged oxygen therapy often develop cognitive dysfunction in later life. Previously, we reported that 14-week-old young adult mice exposed to hyperoxia as newborns had spatial and learning deficits and hippocampal shrinkage. We hypothesized that the underlying mechanism was the induction of hippocampal mitochondrial dysfunction by neonatal hyperoxia. C57BL/6J mouse pups were exposed to 85% oxygen or room air from P2–P14. Hippocampal proteomic analysis was performed in young adult mice (14 weeks). Mitochondrial bioenergetics were measured in neonatal (P14) and young adult mice. We found that hyperoxia exposure reduced mitochondrial ATP-linked oxygen consumption and increased state 4 respiration linked proton leak in both neonatal and young adult mice while complex I function was decreased at P14 but increased in young adult mice. Proteomic analysis revealed that hyperoxia exposure decreased complex I NDUFB8 and NDUFB11 and complex IV 7B subunits, but increased complex III subunit 9 in young adult mice. In conclusion, neonatal hyperoxia permanently impairs hippocampal mitochondrial function and alters complex I function. These hippocampal mitochondrial changes may account for cognitive deficits seen in children and adolescents born preterm and may potentially be a contributing mechanism in other oxidative stress associated brain disorders.
  • Published In

  • Scientific Reports  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 20950898
  • Author List

  • Ramani M; Miller K; Brown J; Kumar R; Kadasamy J; McMahon L; Ballinger S; Ambalavanan N
  • Volume

  • 9
  • Issue

  • 1