bims-cytox1 Biomed News
on Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1
Issue of 2020‒08‒30
five papers selected by
Gavin McStay
Staffordshire University

  1. J Cell Sci. 2020 Aug 25. pii: jcs.248468. [Epub ahead of print]
    Antón Z, Mullally G, Ford H, van der Kamp MW, Szczelkun MD, Lane JD.
      Current methodologies for targeting the mitochondrial genome for research and/or therapy development in mitochondrial diseases are restricted by practical limitations and technical inflexibility. A molecular toolbox for CRISPR-mediated mitochondrial genome editing is desirable, as this could enable targeting of mtDNA haplotypes using the precision and tuneability of CRISPR enzymes. "MitoCRISPR" systems described to date lack reproducibility and independent corroboration. We have explored the requirements for MitoCRISPR in human cells by CRISPR nuclease engineering, including the use of alternative mitochondrial protein targeting sequences and smaller paralogues, and the application of gRNA modifications for mitochondrial import. We demonstrate varied mitochondrial targeting efficiencies and effects on mitochondrial dynamics/function of different CRISPR nucleases, with Lachnospiraceae bacterium ND2006 (Lb) Cas12a being better targeted and tolerated than Cas9 variants. We also provide evidence of Cas9 gRNA association with mitochondria in HeLa cells and isolated yeast mitochondria, even in the absence of a targeting RNA aptamer. Our data link mitochondrial-targeted LbCas12a/crRNA with increased mtDNA copy number dependent upon DNA binding and cleavage activity. We discuss reproducibility issues and the future steps necessary for MitoCRISPR.
    Keywords:  Cas12a; Cas9; CrRNA; GRNA; Import; MitoCRISPR; Targeting
  2. Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis. 2020 Aug 19. pii: S0925-4439(20)30283-0. [Epub ahead of print] 165935
    Ramírez-Camacho I, García-Niño WR, Flores-García M, Pedraza-Chaverri J, Zazueta C.
      Deregulation of nutrient, hormonal, or neuronal signaling produces metabolic alterations that result in increased mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) production. The associations of the mitochondrial respiratory chain components into supercomplexes could have pathophysiological relevance in metabolic diseases, as supramolecular arrangements, by sustaining a high electron transport rate, might prevent ROS generation. In this review, the relationship between mitochondrial dysfunction and supercomplex arrangement of the mitochondrial respiratory chain components in obesity, insulin resistance, hepatic steatosis and diabetes mellitus is summarized and discussed.
    Keywords:  Insulin resistance; Liver; Obesity; Respiratory supercomplexes; T2DM
  3. Annu Rev Genet. 2020 Aug 28.
    Medini H, Cohen T, Mishmar D.
      Out of many intracellular bacteria, only the mitochondria and chloroplasts abandoned their independence billions of years ago and became endosymbionts within the host eukaryotic cell. Consequently, one cannot grow eukaryotic cells without their mitochondria, and the mitochondria cannot divide outside of the cell, thus reflecting interdependence. Here, we argue that such interdependence underlies the fundamental role of mitochondrial activities in the emergence of metazoans. Several lines of evidence support our hypothesis: (a) Differentiation and embryogenesis rely on mitochondrial function; (b) mitochondrial metabolites are primary precursors for epigenetic modifications (such as methyl and acetyl), which are critical for chromatin remodeling and gene expression, particularly during differentiation and embryogenesis; (c) mitonuclear coregulation adapted to accommodate both housekeeping and tissue-dependent metabolic needs. We discuss the evolution of the unique mitochondrial genetic system, mitochondrial metabolites, mitonuclear coregulation, and their critical roles in the emergence of metazoans and in human disorders. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Genetics, Volume 54 is November 23, 2020. Please see for revised estimates.
  4. Sci Adv. 2020 Jul;6(31): eaba5345
    Lechuga-Vieco AV, Latorre-Pellicer A, Johnston IG, Prota G, Gileadi U, Justo-Méndez R, Acín-Pérez R, Martínez-de-Mena R, Fernández-Toro JM, Jimenez-Blasco D, Mora A, Nicolás-Ávila JA, Santiago DJ, Priori SG, Bolaños JP, Sabio G, Criado LM, Ruíz-Cabello J, Cerundolo V, Jones NS, Enríquez JA.
      Heteroplasmy, multiple variants of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) in the same cytoplasm, may be naturally generated by mutations but is counteracted by a genetic mtDNA bottleneck during oocyte development. Engineered heteroplasmic mice with nonpathological mtDNA variants reveal a nonrandom tissue-specific mtDNA segregation pattern, with few tissues that do not show segregation. The driving force for this dynamic complex pattern has remained unexplained for decades, challenging our understanding of this fundamental biological problem and hindering clinical planning for inherited diseases. Here, we demonstrate that the nonrandom mtDNA segregation is an intracellular process based on organelle selection. This cell type-specific decision arises jointly from the impact of mtDNA haplotypes on the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) system and the cell metabolic requirements and is strongly sensitive to the nuclear context and to environmental cues.
  5. Nat Commun. 2020 Aug 27. 11(1): 4281
    Sohn BK, Basu U, Lee SW, Cho H, Shen J, Deshpande A, Johnson LC, Das K, Patel SS, Kim H.
      Controlling efficiency and fidelity in the early stage of mitochondrial DNA transcription is crucial for regulating cellular energy metabolism. Conformational transitions of the transcription initiation complex must be central for such control, but how the conformational dynamics progress throughout transcription initiation remains unknown. Here, we use single-molecule fluorescence resonance energy transfer techniques to examine the conformational dynamics of the transcriptional system of yeast mitochondria with single-base resolution. We show that the yeast mitochondrial transcriptional complex dynamically transitions among closed, open, and scrunched states throughout the initiation stage. Then abruptly at position +8, the dynamic states of initiation make a sharp irreversible transition to an unbent conformation with associated promoter release. Remarkably, stalled initiation complexes remain in dynamic scrunching and unscrunching states without dissociating the RNA transcript, implying the existence of backtracking transitions with possible regulatory roles. The dynamic landscape of transcription initiation suggests a kinetically driven regulation of mitochondrial transcription.