Uncoupling proteins: a role in protection against reactive oxygen species--or not?

Biochimica et biophysica acta

PubMedID: 16806053

Cannon B, Shabalina IG, Kramarova TV, Petrovic N, Nedergaard J. Uncoupling proteins: a role in protection against reactive oxygen species--or not?. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2006;1757(5-6):449-58.
A physiological function of the original uncoupling protein, UCP1, is well established: UCP1 is the molecular background for nonshivering thermogenesis. The functions of the "novel" UCPs, UCP2 and UCP3, are still not established. Recent discussions imply that all UCPs may play a role in protection against reactive oxygen species (ROS). Here we examine critically the evidence that UCP1, UCP2 and UCP3 are stimulated by ROS (superoxide) or ROS products (4-hydroxy-2-nonenal), and that the UCPs actually diminish oxidative damage. We conclude that, concerning UCP1, it is unlikely that it has such a role; concerning UCP2/UCP3, most evidence for physiologically significant roles in this respect is still circumstantial.