bims-micpro Biomed News
on Discovery and characterization of microproteins
Issue of 2021‒04‒11
one paper selected by
Thomas Martinez
Salk Institute for Biological Studies

  1. Nat Commun. 2021 Apr 09. 12(1): 2130
      Mito-SEPs are small open reading frame-encoded peptides that localize to the mitochondria to regulate metabolism. Motivated by an intriguing negative association between mito-SEPs and inflammation, here we screen for mito-SEPs that modify inflammatory outcomes and report a mito-SEP named "Modulator of cytochrome C oxidase during Inflammation" (MOCCI) that is upregulated during inflammation and infection to promote host-protective resolution. MOCCI, a paralog of the NDUFA4 subunit of cytochrome C oxidase (Complex IV), replaces NDUFA4 in Complex IV during inflammation to lower mitochondrial membrane potential and reduce ROS production, leading to cyto-protection and dampened immune response. The MOCCI transcript also generates miR-147b, which targets the NDUFA4 mRNA with similar immune dampening effects as MOCCI, but simultaneously enhances RIG-I/MDA-5-mediated viral immunity. Our work uncovers a dual-component pleiotropic regulation of host inflammation and immunity by MOCCI (C15ORF48) for safeguarding the host during infection and inflammation.