bims-celmim Biomed News
on Cellular and mitochondrial metabolism
Issue of 2024‒06‒16
seventeen papers selected by
Marc Segarra Mondejar

  1. Cell. 2024 Jun 05. pii: S0092-8674(24)00526-9. [Epub ahead of print]
      Mitochondrial dynamics play a critical role in cell fate decisions and in controlling mtDNA levels and distribution. However, the molecular mechanisms linking mitochondrial membrane remodeling and quality control to mtDNA copy number (CN) regulation remain elusive. Here, we demonstrate that the inner mitochondrial membrane (IMM) protein mitochondrial fission process 1 (MTFP1) negatively regulates IMM fusion. Moreover, manipulation of mitochondrial fusion through the regulation of MTFP1 levels results in mtDNA CN modulation. Mechanistically, we found that MTFP1 inhibits mitochondrial fusion to isolate and exclude damaged IMM subdomains from the rest of the network. Subsequently, peripheral fission ensures their segregation into small MTFP1-enriched mitochondria (SMEM) that are targeted for degradation in an autophagic-dependent manner. Remarkably, MTFP1-dependent IMM quality control is essential for basal nucleoid recycling and therefore to maintain adequate mtDNA levels within the cell.
    Keywords:  IMM quality control; IMM remodeling; MTFP1; autophagy; fission and fusion; mitochondria; mitochondrial dynamics; mitophagy; mtDNA
  2. Cell Death Dis. 2024 Jun 10. 15(6): 405
      Genetic mutations causing primary mitochondrial disease (i.e those compromising oxidative phosphorylation [OxPhos]) resulting in reduced bioenergetic output display great variability in their clinical features, but the reason for this is unknown. We hypothesized that disruption of the communication between endoplasmic reticulum (ER) and mitochondria at mitochondria-associated ER membranes (MAM) might play a role in this variability. To test this, we assayed MAM function and ER-mitochondrial communication in OxPhos-deficient cells, including cybrids from patients with selected pathogenic mtDNA mutations. Our results show that each of the various mutations studied indeed altered MAM functions, but notably, each disorder presented with a different MAM "signature". We also found that mitochondrial membrane potential is a key driver of ER-mitochondrial connectivity. Moreover, our findings demonstrate that disruption in ER-mitochondrial communication has consequences for cell survivability that go well beyond that of reduced ATP output. The findings of a "MAM-OxPhos" axis, the role of mitochondrial membrane potential in controlling this process, and the contribution of MAM dysfunction to cell death, reveal a new relationship between mitochondria and the rest of the cell, as well as providing new insights into the diagnosis and treatment of these devastating disorders.
  3. Cell Metab. 2024 Jun 07. pii: S1550-4131(24)00190-6. [Epub ahead of print]
      Mitochondria house many metabolic pathways required for homeostasis and growth. To explore how human cells respond to mitochondrial dysfunction, we performed metabolomics in fibroblasts from patients with various mitochondrial disorders and cancer cells with electron transport chain (ETC) blockade. These analyses revealed extensive perturbations in purine metabolism, and stable isotope tracing demonstrated that ETC defects suppress de novo purine synthesis while enhancing purine salvage. In human lung cancer, tumors with markers of low oxidative mitochondrial metabolism exhibit enhanced expression of the salvage enzyme hypoxanthine phosphoribosyl transferase 1 (HPRT1) and high levels of the HPRT1 product inosine monophosphate. Mechanistically, ETC blockade activates the pentose phosphate pathway, providing phosphoribosyl diphosphate to drive purine salvage supplied by uptake of extracellular bases. Blocking HPRT1 sensitizes cancer cells to ETC inhibition. These findings demonstrate how cells remodel purine metabolism upon ETC blockade and uncover a new metabolic vulnerability in tumors with low respiration.
    Keywords:  HPRT1; NAD(+):NADH ratio; electron transport chain; metabolomics; purine metabolism; stable isotopes
  4. bioRxiv. 2024 May 28. pii: 2024.05.27.596106. [Epub ahead of print]
      Metabolic adaptations in response to changes in energy supply and demand are essential for survival. The mitochondrial calcium uniporter coordinates metabolic homeostasis by regulating TCA cycle activation, mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation and cellular calcium signaling. However, a comprehensive analysis of uniporter-regulated mitochondrial metabolic pathways has remained unexplored. Here, we investigate the metabolic consequences of uniporter loss- and gain-of-function, and identify a key transcriptional regulator that mediates these effects. Using gene expression profiling and proteomic, we find that loss of uniporter function increases the expression of proteins in the branched-chain amino acid (BCAA) catabolism pathway. Activity is further augmented through phosphorylation of the enzyme that catalyzes this pathway's committed step. Conversely, in the liver cancer fibrolamellar carcinoma (FLC)-which we demonstrate to have high mitochondrial calcium levels- expression of BCAA catabolism enzymes is suppressed. We also observe uniporter-dependent suppression of the transcription factor KLF15, a master regulator of liver metabolic gene expression, including those involved in BCAA catabolism. Notably, loss of uniporter activity upregulates KLF15, along with its transcriptional target ornithine transcarbamylase (OTC), a component of the urea cycle, suggesting that uniporter hyperactivation may contribute to the hyperammonemia observed in FLC patients. Collectively, we establish that FLC has increased mitochondrial calcium levels, and identify an important role for mitochondrial calcium signaling in metabolic adaptation through the transcriptional regulation of metabolism.
  5. Science. 2024 Jun 14. 384(6701): eadj4301
      Mitochondria are critical for proper organ function and mechanisms to promote mitochondrial health during regeneration would benefit tissue homeostasis. We report that during liver regeneration, proliferation is suppressed in electron transport chain (ETC)-dysfunctional hepatocytes due to an inability to generate acetyl-CoA from peripheral fatty acids through mitochondrial β-oxidation. Alternative modes for acetyl-CoA production from pyruvate or acetate are suppressed in the setting of ETC dysfunction. This metabolic inflexibility forces a dependence on ETC-functional mitochondria and restoring acetyl-CoA production from pyruvate is sufficient to allow ETC-dysfunctional hepatocytes to proliferate. We propose that metabolic inflexibility within hepatocytes can be advantageous by limiting the expansion of ETC-dysfunctional cells.
  6. J Vis Exp. 2024 May 24.
      Peripheral mononuclear cells (PBMCs) exhibit robust changes in mitochondrial respiratory capacity in response to health and disease. While these changes do not always reflect what occurs in other tissues, such as skeletal muscle, these cells are an accessible and valuable source of viable mitochondria from human subjects. PBMCs are exposed to systemic signals that impact their bioenergetic state. Thus, expanding our tools to interrogate mitochondrial metabolism in this population will elucidate mechanisms related to disease progression. Functional assays of mitochondria are often limited to using respiratory outputs following maximal substrate, inhibitor, and uncoupler concentrations to determine the full range of respiratory capacity, which may not be achievable in vivo. The conversion of adenosine diphosphate (ADP) to adenosine triphosphate (ATP) by ATP-synthase results in a decrease in mitochondrial membrane potential (mMP) and an increase in oxygen consumption. To provide a more integrated analysis of mitochondrial dynamics, this article describes the use of high-resolution fluorespirometry to measure the simultaneous response of oxygen consumption and mitochondrial membrane potential (mMP) to physiologically relevant concentrations of ADP. This technique uses tetramethylrhodamine methylester (TMRM) to measure mMP polarization in response to ADP titrations following maximal hyperpolarization with complex I and II substrates. This technique can be used to quantify how changes in health status, such as aging and metabolic disease, affect the sensitivity of mitochondrial response to energy demand in PBMCs, T-cells, and monocytes from human subjects.
  7. Sci Rep. 2024 06 13. 14(1): 13653
      Eukaryotic membranes are compartmentalized into distinct micro- and nanodomains that rearrange dynamically in response to external and internal cues. This lateral heterogeneity of the lipid bilayer and associated clustering of distinct membrane proteins contribute to the spatial organization of numerous cellular processes. Here, we show that membrane microdomains within the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) of yeast cells are reorganized during metabolic reprogramming and aging. Using biosensors with varying transmembrane domain length to map lipid bilayer thickness, we demonstrate that in young cells, microdomains of increased thickness mainly exist within the nuclear ER, while progressing cellular age drives the formation of numerous microdomains specifically in the cortical ER. Partitioning of biosensors with long transmembrane domains into these microdomains increased protein stability and prevented autophagic removal. In contrast, reporters with short transmembrane domains progressively accumulated at the membrane contact site between the nuclear ER and the vacuole, the so-called nucleus-vacuole junction (NVJ), and were subjected to turnover via selective microautophagy occurring specifically at these sites. Reporters with long transmembrane domains were excluded from the NVJ. Our data reveal age-dependent rearrangement of the lateral organization of the ER and establish transmembrane domain length as a determinant of membrane contact site localization and autophagic degradation.
  8. PLoS One. 2024 ;19(6): e0303934
      The nerve growth factor (NGF) participates in cell survival and glucose-stimulated insulin secretion (GSIS) processes in rat adult beta cells. GSIS is a complex process in which metabolic events and ionic channel activity are finely coupled. GLUT2 and glucokinase (GK) play central roles in GSIS by regulating the rate of the glycolytic pathway. The biphasic release of insulin upon glucose stimulation characterizes mature adult beta cells. On the other hand, beta cells obtained from neonatal, suckling, and weaning rats are considered immature because they secrete low levels of insulin and do not increase insulin secretion in response to high glucose. The weaning of rats (at postnatal day 20 in laboratory conditions) involves a dietary transition from maternal milk to standard chow. It is characterized by increased basal plasma glucose levels and insulin levels, which we consider physiological insulin resistance. On the other hand, we have observed that incubating rat beta cells with NGF increases GSIS by increasing calcium currents in neonatal cells. In this work, we studied the effects of NGF on the regulation of cellular distribution and activity of GLUT2 and GK to explore its potential role in the maturation of GSIS in beta cells from P20 rats. Pancreatic islet cells from both adult and P20 rats were isolated and incubated with 5.6 mM or 15.6 mM glucose with and without NGF for 4 hours. Specific immunofluorescence assays were conducted following the incubation period to detect insulin and GLUT2. Additionally, we measured glucose uptake, glucokinase activity, and insulin secretion assays at 5.6 mM or 15.6 mM glucose concentrations. We observed an age-dependent variation in the distribution of GLUT2 in pancreatic beta cells and found that glucose plays a regulatory role in GLUT2 distribution independently of age. Moreover, NGF increases GLUT2 abundance, glucose uptake, and GSIS in P20 beta cells and GK activity in adult beta cells. Our results suggest that besides increasing calcium currents, NGF regulates metabolic components of the GSIS, thereby contributing to the maturation process of pancreatic beta cells.
  9. Nat Metab. 2024 Jun 13.
      The tricarboxylic acid cycle, nutrient oxidation, histone acetylation and synthesis of lipids, glycans and haem all require the cofactor coenzyme A (CoA). Although the sources and regulation of the acyl groups carried by CoA for these processes are heavily studied, a key underlying question is less often considered: how is production of CoA itself controlled? Here, we discuss the many cellular roles of CoA and the regulatory mechanisms that govern its biosynthesis from cysteine, ATP and the essential nutrient pantothenate (vitamin B5), or from salvaged precursors in mammals. Metabolite feedback and signalling mechanisms involving acetyl-CoA, other acyl-CoAs, acyl-carnitines, MYC, p53, PPARα, PINK1 and insulin- and growth factor-stimulated PI3K-AKT signalling regulate the vitamin B5 transporter SLC5A6/SMVT and CoA biosynthesis enzymes PANK1, PANK2, PANK3, PANK4 and COASY. We also discuss methods for measuring CoA-related metabolites, compounds that target CoA biosynthesis and diseases caused by mutations in pathway enzymes including types of cataracts, cardiomyopathy and neurodegeneration (PKAN and COPAN).
  10. Science. 2024 Jun 14. 384(6701): 1247-1253
      Respiratory complex I is an efficient driver for oxidative phosphorylation in mammalian mitochondria, but its uncontrolled catalysis under challenging conditions leads to oxidative stress and cellular damage. Ischemic conditions switch complex I from rapid, reversible catalysis into a dormant state that protects upon reoxygenation, but the molecular basis for the switch is unknown. We combined precise biochemical definition of complex I catalysis with high-resolution cryo-electron microscopy structures in the phospholipid bilayer of coupled vesicles to reveal the mechanism of the transition into the dormant state, modulated by membrane interactions. By implementing a versatile membrane system to unite structure and function, attributing catalytic and regulatory properties to specific structural states, we define how a conformational switch in complex I controls its physiological roles.
  11. Cancer Res. 2024 Jun 11.
      Serine is critical for supporting cancer metabolism, and depriving malignant cells of this non-essential amino acid exerts anti-neoplastic effects, in large part, through disrupting metabolic pathways. Given the intricate relationship between cancer metabolism and the immune system, the metabolic defects imposed by serine deprivation might impact tumor-targeting immunity. Here, we demonstrated that restricting endogenous and exogenous sources of serine in colorectal cancer (CRC) cells results in mitochondrial dysfunction, leading to mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) accumulation in the cytosol and consequent cGAS-STING1-driven type I interferon (IFN) secretion. Depleting mtDNA or blocking its release attenuated cGAS-STING1 activation during serine deprivation. In vivo studies revealed that serine deprivation limits tumor growth, accompanied by enhanced type I IFN signaling and intratumoral infiltration of immune effector cells. Notably, the tumor-suppressive and immune-enhancing effects of serine restriction were impaired by T cell depletion and IFN receptor blockade. Moreover, disrupting cGAS-STING1 signaling in CRC cells limited the immunostimulatory and tumor-suppressive effects of serine deprivation. Lastly, serine depletion increased the sensitivity of tumors to an immune checkpoint inhibitor targeting PD-1. Taken together, these findings reveal a role for serine as a suppressor of anti-tumor immunity, suggesting that serine deprivation may be employed to enhance tumor immunogenicity and improve responsiveness to immune checkpoint inhibitors.
  12. JCI Insight. 2024 Jun 10. pii: e168825. [Epub ahead of print]9(11):
    Kidney Precision Medicine Project, and the CRIC Study Investigators
      Lactate elevation is a well-characterized biomarker of mitochondrial dysfunction, but its role in diabetic kidney disease (DKD) is not well defined. Urine lactate was measured in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) in 3 cohorts (HUNT3, SMART2D, CRIC). Urine and plasma lactate were measured during euglycemic and hyperglycemic clamps in participants with type 1 diabetes (T1D). Patients in the HUNT3 cohort with DKD had elevated urine lactate levels compared with age- and sex-matched controls. In patients in the SMART2D and CRIC cohorts, the third tertile of urine lactate/creatinine was associated with more rapid estimated glomerular filtration rate decline, relative to first tertile. Patients with T1D demonstrated a strong association between glucose and lactate in both plasma and urine. Glucose-stimulated lactate likely derives in part from proximal tubular cells, since lactate production was attenuated with sodium-glucose cotransporter-2 (SGLT2) inhibition in kidney sections and in SGLT2-deficient mice. Several glycolytic genes were elevated in human diabetic proximal tubules. Lactate levels above 2.5 mM potently inhibited mitochondrial oxidative phosphorylation in human proximal tubule (HK2) cells. We conclude that increased lactate production under diabetic conditions can contribute to mitochondrial dysfunction and become a feed-forward component to DKD pathogenesis.
    Keywords:  Chronic kidney disease; Diabetes; Mitochondria; Nephrology
  13. Breast Cancer Res Treat. 2024 Jun 14.
      PURPOSE: Rapid proliferation and nutrition starvation in the tumor microenvironment pose significant challenges to cellular protein homeostasis. The accumulation of misfolded proteins in the endoplasmic reticulum lumen induces stress on cells and causes irreversible damage to cells if unresolved. Emerging reports emphasize the influence of the tumor microenvironment on therapeutic molecule efficacy and treatment outcomes. Hence, we aimed to understand the influence of tamoxifen on the cellular adaptation to endoplasmic reticulum stress during metabolic stress in breast cancer cells.METHODS: Nutrition deprivation induces endoplasmic reticulum stress (ER stress), and the unfolded protein response (UPR) in breast cancer cells was confirmed by a Thioflavin B assay and western blotting. Tamoxifen-indued ER-phagy was studied using an MCD assay, confocal microscopy, and western blotting.
    RESULTS: Nutrition deprivation induces ER stress in breast cancer cells. Interestingly, tamoxifen modulates the nutrition deprivation-induced endoplasmic reticulum stress through enhancing the selective ER-phagy, a specialized autophagy. The tamoxifen-induced ER-phagy is mediated by AMPK activation. The pharmacological inhibition of AMPK blocks tamoxifen-induced ER-phagy and tamoxifen modulatory effect on ER stress during nutrition deprivation.
    CONCLUSION: Tamoxifen modulates ER stress by inducing ER-phagy through AMPK, thereby, may support breast cancer cell survival during nutrition deprivation conditions.
    Keywords:  AMPK; Breast cancer; ER stress; ER-phagy; Nutrition deprivation; Tamoxifen
  14. bioRxiv. 2024 Jun 01. pii: 2023.08.25.554830. [Epub ahead of print]
      The activation and functional differentiation of CD8 T cells are linked to metabolic pathways that result in the production of lactate. Lactylation is a lactate-derived histone post-translational modification (hPTM); however, the relevance of histone lactylation in the context of CD8 T cell activation and function is not known. Here, we show the enrichment of H3K18-lactylation (H3K18la) and H3K9-lactylation (H3K9la) in human and murine CD8 T cells which act as transcription initiators of key genes regulating CD8 T cell phenotype and function. Further, we note distinct impacts of H3K18la and H3K9la on CD8 T cell subsets linked to their specific metabolic profiles. Importantly, we demonstrate that modulation of H3K18la and H3K9la by targeting metabolic and epigenetic pathways regulates CD8 T cell effector function including anti-tumor immunity in preclinical models. Overall, our study uncovers the unique contributions of H3K18la and H3K9la in modulating CD8 T cell phenotype and function intricately associated with metabolic state.
  15. Nat Commun. 2024 Jun 11. 15(1): 4996
      Assessing the impact of SARS-CoV-2 on organelle dynamics allows a better understanding of the mechanisms of viral replication. We combine label-free holotomographic microscopy with Artificial Intelligence to visualize and quantify the subcellular changes triggered by SARS-CoV-2 infection. We study the dynamics of shape, position and dry mass of nucleoli, nuclei, lipid droplets and mitochondria within hundreds of single cells from early infection to syncytia formation and death. SARS-CoV-2 infection enlarges nucleoli, perturbs lipid droplets, changes mitochondrial shape and dry mass, and separates lipid droplets from mitochondria. We then used Bayesian network modeling on organelle dry mass states to define organelle cross-regulation networks and report modifications of organelle cross-regulation that are triggered by infection and syncytia formation. Our work highlights the subcellular remodeling induced by SARS-CoV-2 infection and provides an Artificial Intelligence-enhanced, label-free methodology to study in real-time the dynamics of cell populations and their content.
  16. PLoS One. 2024 ;19(6): e0304405
      The liver is a highly specialized organ involved in regulating systemic metabolism. Understanding metabolic reprogramming of liver disease is key in discovering clinical biomarkers, which relies on robust tissue biobanks. However, sample collection and storage procedures pose a threat to obtaining reliable results, as metabolic alterations may occur during sample handling. This study aimed to elucidate the impact of pre-analytical delay during liver resection surgery on liver tissue metabolomics. Patients were enrolled for liver resection during which normal tissue was collected and snap-frozen at three timepoints: before transection, after transection, and after analysis in Pathology. Metabolomics analyses were performed using 1H Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) and Liquid Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (LC-MS). Time at cryopreservation was the principal variable contributing to differences between liver specimen metabolomes, which superseded even interindividual variability. NMR revealed global changes in the abundance of an array of metabolites, namely a decrease in most metabolites and an increase in β-glucose and lactate. LC-MS revealed that succinate, alanine, glutamine, arginine, leucine, glycerol-3-phosphate, lactate, AMP, glutathione, and NADP were enhanced during cryopreservation delay (all p<0.05), whereas aspartate, iso(citrate), ADP, and ATP, decreased (all p<0.05). Cryopreservation delays occurring during liver tissue biobanking significantly alter an array of metabolites. Indeed, such alterations compromise the integrity of metabolomic data from liver specimens, underlining the importance of standardized protocols for tissue biobanking in hepatology.
  17. FEBS J. 2024 Jun 10.
      Almost all mitochondrial proteins are encoded by nuclear genes and synthesized in the cytosol as precursor proteins. Signals in the amino acid sequence of these precursors ensure their targeting and translocation into mitochondria. However, in many cases, only a certain fraction of a specific protein is transported into mitochondria, while the rest either remains in the cytosol or undergoes reverse translocation to the cytosol, and can populate other cellular compartments. This phenomenon is called dual localization which can be instigated by different mechanisms. These include alternative start or stop codons, differential transcripts, and ambiguous or competing targeting sequences. In many cases, dual localization might serve as an economic strategy to reduce the number of required genes; for example, when the same groups of enzymes are required both in mitochondria and chloroplasts or both in mitochondria and the nucleus/cytoplasm. Such cases frequently employ ambiguous targeting sequences to distribute proteins between both organelles. However, alternative localizations can also be used for signaling, for example when non-imported precursors serve as mitophagy signals or when they represent transcription factors in the nucleus to induce the mitochondrial unfolded stress response. This review provides an overview regarding the mechanisms and the physiological consequences of dual targeting.
    Keywords:  dual targeting; mitochondria; protein import; start codon; targeting signals