bims-mitdis Biomed News
on Mitochondrial disorders
Issue of 2022‒07‒31
seventeen papers selected by
Catalina Vasilescu
University of Helsinki

  1. Clin Transl Med. 2022 Jul;12(7): e954
      BACKGROUND: Mice with deletion of complex I subunit Ndufs4 develop mitochondrial encephalomyopathy resembling Leigh syndrome (LS). The metabolic derangement and underlying mechanisms of cardio-encephalomyopathy in LS remains incompletely understood.METHODS: We performed echocardiography, electrophysiology, confocal microscopy, metabolic and molecular/morphometric analysis of the mice lacking Ndufs4. HEK293 cells, human iPS cells-derived cardiomyocytes and neurons were used to determine the mechanistic role of mitochondrial complex I deficiency.
    RESULTS: LS mice develop severe cardiac bradyarrhythmia and diastolic dysfunction. Human-induced pluripotent stem cell-derived cardiomyocytes (iPS-CMs) with Ndufs4 deletion recapitulate LS cardiomyopathy. Mechanistically, we demonstrate a direct link between complex I deficiency, decreased intracellular (nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) NAD+ /NADH and bradyarrhythmia, mediated by hyperacetylation of the cardiac sodium channel NaV 1.5, particularly at K1479 site. Neuronal apoptosis in the cerebellar and midbrain regions in LS mice was associated with hyperacetylation of p53 and activation of microglia. Targeted metabolomics revealed increases in several amino acids and citric acid cycle intermediates, likely due to impairment of NAD+ -dependent dehydrogenases, and a substantial decrease in reduced Glutathione (GSH). Metabolic rescue by nicotinamide riboside (NR) supplementation increased intracellular NAD+ / NADH, restored metabolic derangement, reversed protein hyperacetylation through NAD+ -dependent Sirtuin deacetylase, and ameliorated cardiomyopathic phenotypes, concomitant with improvement of NaV 1.5 current and SERCA2a function measured by Ca2+ -transients. NR also attenuated neuronal apoptosis and microglial activation in the LS brain and human iPS-derived neurons with Ndufs4 deletion.
    CONCLUSIONS: Our study reveals direct mechanistic explanations of the observed cardiac bradyarrhythmia, diastolic dysfunction and neuronal apoptosis in mouse and human induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) models of LS.
    Keywords:  Cardio-encephalomyopathy; Leigh syndrome; Ndufs; mitochondria; nicotinamide riboside
  2. Front Cell Dev Biol. 2022 ;10 954536
      PINK1 has been characterized as a mitochondrial kinase that can target to damaged mitochondria to initiate mitophagy, a process to remove unhealthy mitochondria for protecting neuronal cells. Mutations of the human PINK1 gene are also found to cause early onset Parkinson's disease, a neurodegenerative disorder with the pathological feature of mitochondrial dysfunction. Despite compelling evidence from in vitro studies to support the role of PINK1 in regulation of mitochondrial function, there is still lack of strong in vivo evidence to validate PINK1-mediated mitophagy in the brain. In addition, growing evidence indicates that PINK1 also executes function independent of mitochondria. In this review, we discuss the mitochondrial dependent and independent functions of PINK1, aiming at elucidating how PINK1 functions differentially under different circumstances.
    Keywords:  PINK1; Parkinson’s disease (PD); mitochondria; mitophagy; parkin (PARK2)
  3. Nucleic Acids Res. 2022 Jul 29. pii: gkac660. [Epub ahead of print]
      Mitochondrial DNA has been investigated for nearly fifty years, but many aspects of the maintenance of this essential small genome remain unknown. Like any genome, mammalian mitochondrial DNA requires the function of topoisomerases to counter and regulate the topological tension arising during replication, transcription, segregation, and repair. However, the functions of the different mitochondrial topoisomerases are poorly understood. Here, we investigate the role of Topoisomerase 3α (Top3α) in mtDNA replication and transcription, providing evidence that this enzyme, previously reported to act in mtDNA segregation, also participates in mtDNA replication fork progression. Top3α knockdown caused replication fork stalling, increased mtDNA catenation and decreased mtDNA levels. Overexpression in contrast induced abundant double-strand breaks around the replication origin OH and abortion of early replication, while at the same time improving the resolution of mtDNA replication termination intermediates. Both Top3α knockdown and overexpression affected mitochondrial RNA transcription, leading to a decrease in steady-state levels of mitochondrial transcripts. Together, our results indicate that the mitochondrial isoform of Top3α is not only involved in mtDNA segregation, as reported previously, but also supports the progression of the replication fork. Mitochondrial Top3α is also influencing the progression of transcription, with its absence affecting downstream transcript levels.
  4. Nat Commun. 2022 Jul 25. 13(1): 4303
      Mitochondria are highly dynamic organelles whose fragmentation by fission is critical to their functional integrity and cellular homeostasis. Here, we develop a method via optogenetic control of mitochondria-lysosome contacts (MLCs) to induce mitochondrial fission with spatiotemporal accuracy. MLCs can be achieved by blue-light-induced association of mitochondria and lysosomes through various photoactivatable dimerizers. Real-time optogenetic induction of mitochondrial fission is tracked in living cells to measure the fission rate. The optogenetic method partially restores the mitochondrial functions of SLC25A46-/- cells, which display defects in mitochondrial fission and hyperfused mitochondria. The optogenetic MLCs system thus provides a platform for studying mitochondrial fission and treating mitochondrial diseases.
  5. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2022 Aug 02. 119(31): e2119009119
      Unknown processes promote the accumulation of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) mutations during aging. Accumulation of defective mitochondrial genomes is thought to promote the progression of heteroplasmic mitochondrial diseases and degenerative changes with natural aging. We used a heteroplasmic Drosophila model to test 1) whether purifying selection acts to limit the abundance of deleterious mutations during development and aging, 2) whether quality control pathways contribute to purifying selection, 3) whether activation of quality control can mitigate accumulation of deleterious mutations, and 4) whether improved quality control improves health span. We show that purifying selection operates during development and growth but is ineffective during aging. Genetic manipulations suggest that a quality control process known to enforce purifying selection during oogenesis also suppresses accumulation of a deleterious mutation during growth and development. Flies with nuclear genotypes that enhance purifying selection sustained higher genome quality, retained more vigorous climbing activity, and lost fewer dopaminergic neurons. A pharmacological agent thought to enhance quality control produced similar benefits. Importantly, similar pharmacological treatment of aged mice reversed age-associated accumulation of a deleterious mtDNA mutation. Our findings reveal dynamic maintenance of mitochondrial genome fitness and reduction in the effectiveness of purifying selection during life. Importantly, we describe interventions that mitigate and even reverse age-associated genome degeneration in flies and in mice. Furthermore, mitigation of genome degeneration improved well-being in a Drosophila model of heteroplasmic mitochondrial disease.
    Keywords:  aging; heteroplasmy; mitochondria; mtDNA; mutations
  6. Metabolites. 2022 Jul 09. pii: 630. [Epub ahead of print]12(7):
      The last decade has seen a strong proliferation of therapeutic strategies for the treatment of metabolic and age-related diseases based on increasing cellular NAD+ bioavailability. Among them, the dietary supplementation with NAD+ precursors-classically known as vitamin B3-has received most of the attention. Multiple molecules can act as NAD+ precursors through independent biosynthetic routes. Interestingly, eukaryote organisms have conserved a remarkable ability to utilize all of these different molecules, even if some of them are scarcely found in nature. Here, we discuss the possibility that the conservation of all of these biosynthetic pathways through evolution occurred because the different NAD+ precursors might serve specialized purposes.
    Keywords:  NAD+; niacin; nicotinamide riboside; vitamin B3
  7. Sci Adv. 2022 Jul 29. 8(30): eabo0340
      Mitochondrial quality in skeletal muscle is crucial for maintaining energy homeostasis during metabolic stresses. However, how muscle mitochondrial quality is controlled and its physiological impacts remain unclear. Here, we demonstrate that mitoprotease LONP1 is essential for preserving muscle mitochondrial proteostasis and systemic metabolic homeostasis. Skeletal muscle-specific deletion of Lon protease homolog, mitochondrial (LONP1) impaired mitochondrial protein turnover, leading to muscle mitochondrial proteostasis stress. A benefit of this adaptive response was the complete resistance to diet-induced obesity. These favorable metabolic phenotypes were recapitulated in mice overexpressing LONP1 substrate ΔOTC in muscle mitochondria. Mechanistically, mitochondrial proteostasis imbalance elicits an unfolded protein response (UPRmt) in muscle that acts distally to modulate adipose tissue and liver metabolism. Unexpectedly, contrary to its previously proposed role, ATF4 is dispensable for the long-range protective response of skeletal muscle. Thus, these findings reveal a pivotal role of LONP1-dependent mitochondrial proteostasis in directing muscle UPRmt to regulate systemic metabolism.
  8. Nat Rev Immunol. 2022 Jul 25.
      Numerous mitochondrial constituents and metabolic products can function as damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) and promote inflammation when released into the cytosol or extracellular milieu. Several safeguards are normally in place to prevent mitochondria from eliciting detrimental inflammatory reactions, including the autophagic disposal of permeabilized mitochondria. However, when the homeostatic capacity of such systems is exceeded or when such systems are defective, inflammatory reactions elicited by mitochondria can become pathogenic and contribute to the aetiology of human disorders linked to autoreactivity. In addition, inefficient inflammatory pathways induced by mitochondrial DAMPs can be pathogenic as they enable the establishment or progression of infectious and neoplastic disorders. Here we discuss the molecular mechanisms through which mitochondria control inflammatory responses, the cellular pathways that are in place to control mitochondria-driven inflammation and the pathological consequences of dysregulated inflammatory reactions elicited by mitochondrial DAMPs.
  9. Bioinformatics. 2022 Jul 26. pii: btac527. [Epub ahead of print]
      MOTIVATION: Recent development of deep-learning methods has led to a breakthrough in the prediction accuracy of 3-dimensional protein structures. Extending these methods to protein pairs is expected to allow large-scale detection of protein-protein interactions and modeling protein complexes at the proteome level.RESULTS: We applied RoseTTAFold and AlphaFold, two of the latest deep-learning methods for structure predictions, to analyze coevolution of human proteins residing in mitochondria, an organelle of vital importance in many cellular processes including energy production, metabolism, cell death, and antiviral response. Variations in mitochondrial proteins have been linked to a plethora of human diseases and genetic conditions. RoseTTAFold, with high computational speed, was used to predict the coevolution of about 95% of mitochondrial protein pairs. Top-ranked pairs were further subject to modeling of the complex structures by AlphaFold, which also produced contact probability with high precision and in many cases consistent with RoseTTAFold. Most top ranked pairs with high contact probability were supported by known protein-protein interactions and/or similarities to experimental structural complexes. For high-scoring pairs without experimental complex structures, our coevolution analyses and structural models shed light on the details of their interfaces, including CHCHD4-AIFM1, MTERF3-TRUB2, FMC1-ATPAF2, and ECSIT-NDUFAF1. We also identified novel PPIs (PYURF-NDUFAF5, LYRM1-MTRF1L and COA8-COX10) for several proteins without experimentally characterized interaction partners, leading to predictions of their molecular functions and the biological processes they are involved in.
    AVAILABILITY: Data of mitochondrial proteins and their interactions are available at:
    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.
  10. Nat Metab. 2022 Jul;4(7): 944-959
      The intake of dietary protein regulates growth, metabolism, fecundity and lifespan across various species, which makes amino acid (AA)-sensing vital for adaptation to the nutritional environment. The general control nonderepressible 2 (GCN2)-activating transcription factor 4 (ATF4) pathway and the mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) pathway are involved in AA-sensing. However, it is not fully understood which AAs regulate these two pathways in living animals and how they coordinate responses to protein restriction. Here we show in Drosophila that the non-essential AA tyrosine (Tyr) is a nutritional cue in the fat body necessary and sufficient for promoting adaptive responses to a low-protein diet, which entails reduction of protein synthesis and mTORC1 activity and increased food intake. This adaptation is regulated by dietary Tyr through GCN2-independent induction of ATF4 target genes in the fat body. This study identifies the Tyr-ATF4 axis as a regulator of the physiological response to a low-protein diet and sheds light on the essential function of a non-essential nutrient.
  11. Biomolecules. 2022 Jul 21. pii: 1009. [Epub ahead of print]12(7):
      The importance of mitochondria in mammalian cells is widely known. Several biochemical reactions and pathways take place within mitochondria: among them, there are those involving the biogenesis of the iron-sulfur (Fe-S) clusters. The latter are evolutionarily conserved, ubiquitous inorganic cofactors, performing a variety of functions, such as electron transport, enzymatic catalysis, DNA maintenance, and gene expression regulation. The synthesis and distribution of Fe-S clusters are strictly controlled cellular processes that involve several mitochondrial proteins that specifically interact each other to form a complex machinery (Iron Sulfur Cluster assembly machinery, ISC machinery hereafter). This machinery ensures the correct assembly of both [2Fe-2S] and [4Fe-4S] clusters and their insertion in the mitochondrial target proteins. The present review provides a structural and molecular overview of the rare diseases associated with the genes encoding for the accessory proteins of the ISC machinery (i.e., GLRX5, ISCA1, ISCA2, IBA57, FDX2, BOLA3, IND1 and NFU1) involved in the assembly and insertion of [4Fe-4S] clusters in mitochondrial proteins. The disease-related missense mutations were mapped on the 3D structures of these accessory proteins or of their protein complexes, and the possible impact that these mutations have on their specific activity/function in the frame of the mitochondrial [4Fe-4S] protein biogenesis is described.
    Keywords:  iron–sulfur cluster; mitochondrial proteins; multiple mitochondrial dysfunction syndromes; rare diseases
  12. Clin Sci (Lond). 2022 Jul 29. 136(14): 1081-1110
      Metabolic demands of skeletal muscle are substantial and are characterized normally as highly flexible and with a large dynamic range. Skeletal muscle composition (e.g., fiber type and mitochondrial content) and metabolism (e.g., capacity to switch between fatty acid and glucose substrates) are altered in obesity, with some changes proceeding and some following the development of the disease. Nonetheless, there are marked interindividual differences in skeletal muscle composition and metabolism in obesity, some of which have been associated with obesity risk and weight loss capacity. In this review, we discuss related molecular mechanisms and how current and novel treatment strategies may enhance weight loss capacity, particularly in diet-resistant obesity.
    Keywords:  metabolic disorders; metabolic regulation; mitochondria; oxidative phosphorylation; skeletal muscle
  13. Cell Rep. 2022 Jul 26. pii: S2211-1247(22)00907-X. [Epub ahead of print]40(4): 111105
      A functional electron transport chain (ETC) is crucial for supporting bioenergetics and biosynthesis. Accordingly, ETC inhibition decreases proliferation in cancer cells but does not seem to impair stem cell proliferation. However, it remains unclear how stem cells metabolically adapt. In this study, we show that pharmacological inhibition of complex III of the ETC in skeletal stem and progenitor cells induces glycolysis side pathways and reroutes the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle to regenerate NAD+ and preserve cell proliferation. These metabolic changes also culminate in increased succinate and 2-hydroxyglutarate levels that inhibit Ten-eleven translocation (TET) DNA demethylase activity, thereby preserving self-renewal and multilineage potential. Mechanistically, mitochondrial malate dehydrogenase and reverse succinate dehydrogenase activity proved to be essential for the metabolic rewiring in response to ETC inhibition. Together, these data show that the metabolic plasticity of skeletal stem and progenitor cells allows them to bypass ETC blockade and preserve their self-renewal.
    Keywords:  CP: Metabolism; CP: Stem cell research; NAD regeneration; TCA rerouting; TET activity; cell-based regenerative medicine; electron transport chain; metabolic plasticity; proliferation; reverse succinate dehydrogenase; self-renewal; skeletal stem cells
  14. Hum Mutat. 2022 Jul 29.
    Michael A Levy, Raissa Relator, Haley McConkey, Erinija Pranckeviciene, Jennifer Kerkhof, Mouna Barat-Houari, Sara Bargiacchi, Elisa Biamino, María Palomares Bralo, Gerarda Cappuccio, Andrea Ciolfi, Angus Clarke, Barbara R DuPont, Mariet W Elting, Laurence Faivre, Timothy Fee, Marco Ferilli, Robin S Fletcher, Florian Cherick, Aidin Foroutan, Michael J Friez, Cristina Gervasini, Sadegheh Haghshenas, Benjamin A Hilton, Zandra Jenkins, Simranpreet Kaur, Suzanne Lewis, Raymond J Louie, Silvia Maitz, Donatella Milani, Angela T Morgan, Renske Oegema, Elsebet Østergaard, Nathalie Ruiz Pallares, Maria Piccione, Astrid S Plomp, Cathryn Poulton, Jack Reilly, Rocio Rius, Stephen Robertson, Kathleen Rooney, Justine Rousseau, Gijs W E Santen, Fernando Santos-Simarro, Josephine Schijns, Gabriella Maria Squeo, Miya St John, Christel Thauvin-Robinet, Giovanna Traficante, Pleuntje J van der Sluijs, Samantha A Vergano, Niels Vos, Kellie K Walden, Dimitar Azmanov, Tugce B Balci, Siddharth Banka, Jozef Gecz, Peter Henneman, Jennifer A Lee, Marcel M A M Mannens, Tony Roscioli, Victoria Siu, David J Amor, Gareth Baynam, Eric G Bend, Kym Boycott, Nicola Brunetti-Pierri, Philippe M Campeau, Dominique Campion, John Christodoulou, David Dyment, Natacha Esber, Jill A Fahrner, Mark D Fleming, David Genevieve, Delphine Heron, Thomas Husson, Kristin D Kernohan, Alisdair McNeill, Leonie A Menke, Giuseppe Merla, Paolo Prontera, Cheryl Rockman-Greenberg, Charles Schwartz, Steven A Skinner, Roger E Stevenson, Marie Vincent, Antonio Vitobello, Marco Tartaglia, Marielle Alders, Matthew L Tedder, Bekim Sadikovic.
      An expanding range of genetic syndromes are characterized by genome-wide disruptions in DNA methylation profiles referred to as episignatures. Episignatures are distinct, highly sensitive and specific biomarkers that have recently been applied in clinical diagnosis of genetic syndromes. Episignatures are contained within the broader disorder-specific genome-wide DNA methylation changes which can share significant overlap amongst different conditions. In this study we performed functional genomic assessment and comparison of disorder-specific and overlapping genome-wide DNA methylation changes related to 65 genetic syndromes with previously described episignatures. We demonstrate evidence of disorder-specific and recurring genome-wide differentially methylated probes (DMPs) and regions (DMRs). The overall distribution of DMPs and DMRs across the majority of the neurodevelopmental genetic syndromes analyzed showed substantial enrichment in gene promoters and CpG islands, and under-representation of the more variable intergenic regions. Analysis showed significant enrichment of the DMPs and DMRs in gene pathways and processes related to neurodevelopment, including neurogenesis, synaptic signaling and synaptic transmission. This study expands beyond the diagnostic utility of DNA methylation episignatures by demonstrating correlation between the function of the mutated genes and the consequent genomic DNA methylation profiles as a key functional element in the molecular etiology of genetic neurodevelopmental disorders. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  DNA methylation; Episignatures; clinical diagnostics.; neurodevelopmental syndromes
  15. J Mater Chem B. 2022 Jul 27.
      Mitochondria play a critical role in cell growth and metabolism. And mitochondrial dysfunction is closely related to various diseases, such as cancers, and neurodegenerative and cardiovascular diseases. Therefore, it is of vital importance to monitor mitochondrial dynamics and function. One of the most widely used methods is to use nanotechnology-mediated mitochondria targeting and imaging. It has gained increasing attention in the past few years because of the flexibility, versatility and effectiveness of nanotechnology. In the past few years, researchers have implemented various types of design and construction of the mitochondrial structure dependent nanoprobes following assorted nanotechnology pathways. This review presents an overview on the recent development of mitochondrial structure dependent target imaging probes and classifies it into two main sections: mitochondrial membrane targeting and mitochondrial microenvironment targeting. Also, the significant impact of previous research as well as the application and perspectives will be demonstrated.
  16. Nature. 2022 Jul 27.
      In response to hormones and growth factors, the class I phosphoinositide-3-kinase (PI3K) signalling network functions as a major regulator of metabolism and growth, governing cellular nutrient uptake, energy generation, reducing cofactor production and macromolecule biosynthesis1. Many of the driver mutations in cancer with the highest recurrence, including in receptor tyrosine kinases, Ras, PTEN and PI3K, pathologically activate PI3K signalling2,3. However, our understanding of the core metabolic program controlled by PI3K is almost certainly incomplete. Here, using mass-spectrometry-based metabolomics and isotope tracing, we show that PI3K signalling stimulates the de novo synthesis of one of the most pivotal metabolic cofactors: coenzyme A (CoA). CoA is the major carrier of activated acyl groups in cells4,5 and is synthesized from cysteine, ATP and the essential nutrient vitamin B5 (also known as pantothenate)6,7. We identify pantothenate kinase 2 (PANK2) and PANK4 as substrates of the PI3K effector kinase AKT8. Although PANK2 is known to catalyse the rate-determining first step of CoA synthesis, we find that the minimally characterized but highly conserved PANK49 is a rate-limiting suppressor of CoA synthesis through its metabolite phosphatase activity. Phosphorylation of PANK4 by AKT relieves this suppression. Ultimately, the PI3K-PANK4 axis regulates the abundance of acetyl-CoA and other acyl-CoAs, CoA-dependent processes such as lipid metabolism and proliferation. We propose that these regulatory mechanisms coordinate cellular CoA supplies with the demands of hormone/growth-factor-driven or oncogene-driven metabolism and growth.
  17. EMBO J. 2022 Jul 28. e111650
      Mechanical inputs give rise to p38 and JNK activation, which mediate adaptive physiological responses in various tissues. In skeletal muscle, contraction-induced p38 and JNK signaling ensure adaptation to exercise, muscle repair, and hypertrophy. However, the mechanisms by which muscle fibers sense mechanical load to activate this signaling have remained elusive. Here, we show that the upstream MAP3K ZAKβ is activated by cellular compression induced by osmotic shock and cyclic compression in vitro, and muscle contraction in vivo. This function relies on ZAKβ's ability to recognize stress fibers in cells and Z-discs in muscle fibers when mechanically perturbed. Consequently, ZAK-deficient mice present with skeletal muscle defects characterized by fibers with centralized nuclei and progressive adaptation towards a slower myosin profile. Our results highlight how cells in general respond to mechanical compressive load and how mechanical forces generated during muscle contraction are translated into MAP kinase signaling.
    Keywords:  ZAKβ; mechanobiology; muscle contraction; myopathy