bims-mitlys Biomed News
on Mitochondria and Lysosomes
Issue of 2021‒09‒12
three papers selected by
Nicoletta Plotegher
University of Padova

  1. Autophagy. 2021 Sep 05. 1-3
      Among other mechanisms, mitochondrial membrane dynamics including mitochondrial fission and fusion, and the activity of the ubiquitin (Ub)-proteasome system (UPS) both are critical for maintaining mitochondrial function. To advance our knowledge of the role of mitochondrial fission, the UPS, and how they coordinatively affect mitochondrial response to proteotoxicity, we analyzed mitochondrial ubiquitination and mitochondria-specific autophagy (mitophagy) in E3 Ub ligase PRKN/parkin-expressing and -deficient cells. Through imaging, biochemical, and genetic analyses, we found that in a model of acute reduction of mitochondrial translation fidelity (MTF) some population of mitochondria within a single cell are enriched, while some showed reduced levels of CYCS (cytochrome c, somatic) and CPOX (coproporphyrinogen oxidase) proteins, both located in the intermembrane space (IMS); henceforth called "mosaic distribution". Formation of mosaic mitochondria requires mitochondrial fission and active mitochondrial translation. In cell lines deficient in PRKN activity, this process is followed by severing the outer mitochondrial membrane (OMM) and ubiquitination of the inner mitochondrial membrane (IMM) proteins (including TRAP1 and CPOX), recruitment of autophagy receptors, and formation of mito-autophagosomes. In contrast, in PRKN-expressing cells, mitochondria with high CYCS and CPOX levels are preferentially targeted by PRKN, leading to OMM ubiquitination and canonical PRKN-PINK1-mediated autophagy.
    Keywords:  DRP1; Parkin; mitochondria; mitochondrial translation; mitophagy; ubiquitin
  2. Nat Commun. 2021 Sep 09. 12(1): 5354
      Mitochondrial division is not an autonomous event but involves multiple organelles, including the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and lysosomes. Whereas the ER drives the constriction of mitochondrial membranes, the role of lysosomes in mitochondrial division is not known. Here, using super-resolution live-cell imaging, we investigate the recruitment of lysosomes to the site of mitochondrial division. We find that the ER recruits lysosomes to the site of division through the interaction of VAMP-associated proteins (VAPs) with the lysosomal lipid transfer protein ORP1L to induce a three-way contact between the ER, lysosome, and the mitochondrion. We also show that ORP1L might transport phosphatidylinositol-4-phosphate (PI(4)P) from lysosomes to mitochondria, as inhibiting its transfer or depleting PI(4)P at the mitochondrial division site impairs fission, demonstrating a direct role for PI(4)P in the division process. Our findings support a model where the ER recruits lysosomes to act in concert at the fission site for the efficient division of mitochondria.
  3. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Sep 14. pii: e2025932118. [Epub ahead of print]118(37):
      Mitochondria form a complex, interconnected reticulum that is maintained through coordination among biogenesis, dynamic fission, and fusion and mitophagy, which are initiated in response to various cues to maintain energetic homeostasis. These cellular events, which make up mitochondrial quality control, act with remarkable spatial precision, but what governs such spatial specificity is poorly understood. Herein, we demonstrate that specific isoforms of the cellular bioenergetic sensor, 5' AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPKα1/α2/β2/γ1), are localized on the outer mitochondrial membrane, referred to as mitoAMPK, in various tissues in mice and humans. Activation of mitoAMPK varies across the reticulum in response to energetic stress, and inhibition of mitoAMPK activity attenuates exercise-induced mitophagy in skeletal muscle in vivo. Discovery of a mitochondrial pool of AMPK and its local importance for mitochondrial quality control underscores the complexity of sensing cellular energetics in vivo that has implications for targeting mitochondrial energetics for disease treatment.
    Keywords:  AMPK; exercise; mitochondria; mitophagy; skeletal muscle