Triacsins A,B,C, and D are newly discovered compounds isolated from the culture filtrate of streptomyces which are known to inhibit nonspecific long chain acyl-CoA synthetase (EC 188.8.131.52.). These inhibitors have not been previously studied with regard to their effects on arachidonoyl-CoA synthetase, an enzyme which specifically utilizes arachidonate and other icosanoid precursor fatty acids. To explore his question, we used triacsin C, a potent inhibitor of the nonspecific acyl-CoA synthetase. Triacsin C was found to inhibit the action of arachidonoyl-CoA synthetase and the nonspecific enzyme in sonicates of HSDM1C1 mouse fibrosarcoma cells. Importantly, however, the triacsin concentration and length of pre-incubation with the enzymes could be adjusted to almost completely inhibit (>80%) the nonspecific long chain acyl CoA-synthetase, with less than 20% inhibition of arachidonoyl-CoA synthetase. Using intact cultured cells exposed to 1 ug/ml traicsin for up to 15 minutes, we unexpectedly observed preferential inhibition of arachidonoyl-CoA synthetase activity. In intact cell studies, arachidonoyl-CoA synthetase was inhibited > 90%, with 55-60% inhibition of the nonspecific acyl-CoA synthetase. As additional evidence of its inhibition of acyl-CoA synthetase enzymes in intact cells, triacsin c inhibited both fatty acid uptake into cells and icosanoid production, metabolic processes which in certain cell types appear to be dependent on acyl-CoA synthetase activity. Thus, triacsin C is a novel inhibitor which can alter the fatty metabolism of intact cells. This compound can be of significant value in determining the specific cellular functions of the two acyl-CoA synthetase enzymes.
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