Analysis of mtDNA/nDNA Ratio in Mice

Pedro M. Quiros1, Aashima Goyal1, Pooja Jha1, Johan Auwerx1

1 Laboratory for Integrative and Systems Physiology, École Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne, Lausanne
Publication Name:  Current Protocols in Mouse Biology
Unit Number:   
DOI:  10.1002/cpmo.21
Online Posting Date:  March, 2017
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Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) lacks the protection provided by the nucleosomes in the nuclear DNA and does not have a DNA repair mechanism, making it highly susceptible to damage, which can lead to mtDNA depletion. mtDNA depletion compromises the efficient function of cells and tissues and thus impacts negatively on health. Here, we describe a brief and easy protocol to quantify mtDNA copy number by determining the mtDNA/nDNA ratio. The procedure has been validated using a cohort of young and aged mice. © 2017 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Keywords: mtDNA; ND1; qPCR; 16SrRNA

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Table of Contents

  • Reagents and Solutions
  • Commentary
  • Literature Cited
  • Figures
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Basic Protocol 1:

  • Mouse (take ∼10 to 30 mg liver or other tissue) or mouse cells growing in 6‐ or 12‐well plates
  • 1× phosphate‐buffered saline (PBS), pH 7.4 (Gibco, cat. no.10010‐015)
  • Lysis buffer (LB; see recipe)
  • 20 mg/ml proteinase K, recombinant, PCR‐grade (Sigma‐Aldrich, cat. no. 3115836001)
  • 5 mg/ml RNase A (ThermoFisher, cat. no. EN0531)
  • Optional: Ultrapure 25:24:1 (v/v/v) phenol:chloroform: isoamyl alcohol (ThermoFisher, cat. no. 15593031)
  • 7.5 M ammonium acetate solution (see recipe)
  • Isopropanol (Fisher Scientific, cat. no. P/7500/17)
  • 70% ethanol (Reactolab, cat. no. 96170)
  • TE buffer (see recipe)
  • 16S rRNA forward and reverse primers:
  • ND1 forward and reverse primers:
  • HK2 forward and reverse primers:
  • qPCR SYBR Green Mix (LightCycler® 480 SYBR Green I Master; Roche Life Science, cat. no. 4887352001)
  • 1.5‐ml and 2‐ml microcentrifuge tubes
  • 55ºC water bath
  • NanoDrop 2000 UV‐vis spectrophotometer
  • 15‐ml conical tubes (e.g., BD Falcon)
  • 384‐well microtiter plates
  • Plate seals (ThermalSeal RTS Sealing Films, Excel Scientific, cat. no. Z734438)
  • Centrifuge with plate adapter
  • Thermal cycler designed for qPCR (LightCycler® 480 Instrument II, Roche)
  • GraphPad Prism software
  • Additional reagents and equipment for anesthesia (Adams and Pacharinsak, ) and sacrifice (Donovan and Brown, ) of mice
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Literature Cited

Literature Cited
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  Adams, S. and Pacharinsak, C. 2015. Mouse anesthesia and analgesia. Curr. Protoc. Mouse Biol. 5:51‐63. doi: 10.1002/9780470942390.mo140179.
  Bogenhagen, D.F. 2012. Mitochondrial DNA nucleoid structure. Biochim. Biophys. Acta 2012:914‐920. doi: 10.1016/j.bbagrm.2011.11.005.
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