Tissue specific phosphorylation of mitochondrial proteins isolated from rat liver, heart muscle, and skeletal muscle

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Phosphorylation of mitochondrial proteins in a variety of biological processes is increasingly being recognized and may contribute to the differences in function and energy demands observed in mitochondria from different tissues such as liver, heart, and skeletal muscle. Here, we used a combination of TiO2 phosphopeptide-enrichment, HILIC fractionation, and LC-MS/MS on isolated mitochondria to investigate the tissue-specific mitochondrial phosphoproteomes of rat liver, heart, and skeletal muscle. In total, we identified 899 phosphorylation sites in 354 different mitochondrial proteins including 479 potential novel sites. Most phosphorylation sites were detected in liver mitochondria (594), followed by heart (448) and skeletal muscle (336), and more phosphorylation sites were exclusively identified in liver mitochondria than in heart and skeletal muscle. Bioinformatics analysis pointed out enrichment for phosphoproteins involved in amino acid and fatty acid metabolism in liver mitochondria, whereas heart and skeletal muscle were enriched for phosphoproteins involved in energy metabolism, in particular, tricarboxylic acid cycle and oxidative phosphorylation. Multiple tissue-specific phosphorylation sites were identified in tissue-specific enzymes such as those encoded by HMGCS2, BDH1, PCK2, CPS1, and OTC in liver mitochondria, and CKMT2 and CPT1B in heart and skeletal muscle. Kinase prediction showed an important role for PKA and PKC in all tissues but also for proline-directed kinases in liver mitochondria. In conclusion, we provide a comprehensive map of mitochondrial phosphorylation sites, which covers approximately one-third of the mitochondrial proteome and can be targeted for the investigation of tissue-specific regulation of mitochondrial biological processes.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Proteome Research
Issue number10
Pages (from-to)4327-4339
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 4. Oct 2013


  • Mitochondrial proteins
  • phosphoproteomes
  • tissue-specific regulation


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