bims-cytox1 Biomed news on
Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1
Issue of 2017‒08‒11
two papers selected by
Gavin McStay
New York Institute of Technology


  1. Am J Hum Genet. 2017 Aug 03. doi: 10.1016/j.ajhg.2017.07.005101(2):
    Abstract:  The synthesis of all 13 mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA)-encoded protein subunits of the human oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system is carried out by mitochondrial ribosomes (mitoribosomes). Defects in the stability of mitoribosomal proteins or mitoribosome assembly impair mitochondrial protein translation, causing combined OXPHOS enzyme deficiency and clinical disease. Here we report four autosomal-recessive pathogenic mutations in the gene encoding the small mitoribosomal subunit protein, MRPS34, in six subjects from four unrelated families with Leigh syndrome and combined OXPHOS defects. Whole-exome sequencing was used to independently identify all variants. Two splice-site mutations were identified, including homozygous c.321+1G>T in a subject of Italian ancestry and homozygous c.322-10G>A in affected sibling pairs from two unrelated families of Puerto Rican descent. In addition, compound heterozygous MRPS34 mutations were identified in a proband of French ancestry; a missense (c.37G>A [p.Glu13Lys]) and a nonsense (c.94C>T [p.Gln32∗]) variant. We demonstrated that these mutations reduce MRPS34 protein levels and the synthesis of OXPHOS subunits encoded by mtDNA. Examination of the mitoribosome profile and quantitative proteomics showed that the mitochondrial translation defect was caused by destabilization of the small mitoribosomal subunit and impaired monosome assembly. Lentiviral-mediated expression of wild-type MRPS34 rescued the defect in mitochondrial translation observed in skin fibroblasts from affected subjects, confirming the pathogenicity of MRPS34 mutations. Our data establish that MRPS34 is required for normal function of the mitoribosome in humans and furthermore demonstrate the power of quantitative proteomic analysis to identify signatures of defects in specific cellular pathways in fibroblasts from subjects with inherited disease.
    Keywords:  Leigh syndrome; MRPS34; mitochondrial diseases; mitochondrial ribosome; mitochondrial translation; quantitative proteomics; respiratory chain; ribosome profiling; whole-exome sequencing
  2. Mitochondrion. 2017 Aug 01. doi: 10.1016/j.mito.2017.07.009
    Abstract:  Conventional DNA replication is initiated from specific origins and requires the synthesis of RNA primers for both the leading and lagging strands. In contrast, the replication of yeast mitochondrial DNA is origin-independent. The replication of the leading strand is likely primed by recombinational structures and proceeded by a rolling circle mechanism. The coexistent linear and circular DNA conformers facilitate the recombination-based initiation. The replication of the lagging strand is poorly understood. Re-evaluation of published data suggests that the rolling circle may also provide structures for the synthesis of the lagging-strand by mechanisms such as template switching. Thus, the coupling of recombination with rolling circle replication and possibly, template switching, may have been selected as an economic replication mode to accommodate the reductive evolution of mitochondria. Such a replication mode spares the need for conventional replicative components, including those required for origin recognition/remodelling, RNA primer synthesis and lagging-strand processing.
    Keywords:  Mitochondrial DNA; Recombination; Replication; Rolling circle; Template switching; Yeast