The mechanisms of how zinc protects the cells against acetic acid toxicity and acts as an antioxidant are still not clear. Here we present results of the metabolic profiling of the eukaryotic model yeast species Saccharomyces cerevisiae subjected to long term high concentration acetic acid stress treatment in the presence and absence of zinc supplementation. Zinc addition decreased the release of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in the presence of chronic acetic acid stress. The dynamic changes in the accumulation of intermediates in central carbon metabolism were observed, and higher contents of intracellular alanine, valine and serine were observed by zinc supplementation. The most significant change was observed in alanine content, which is 3.51-fold of that of the control culture in cells in the stationary phase. Subsequently, it was found that 0.5 g L(-1) alanine addition resulted in faster glucose consumption in the presence of 5 g L(-1) acetic acid, and apparently decreased ROS accumulation in zinc-supplemented cells. This indicates that alanine exerted its antioxidant effect at least partially through the detoxification of acetic acid. In addition, intracellular glutathione (GSH) accumulation was enhanced by zinc addition, which is related to the protection of yeast cells from the oxidative injury caused by acetic acid. Our studies revealed for the first time that zinc modulates cellular amino acid metabolism and redox balance, especially biosynthesis of alanine and glutathione to exert its antioxidant effect.
PMID: 25554248 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]