Mitochondrial dysfunction is a hallmark of aging, and underlies the development of many diseases. Cells maintain mitochondrial homeostasis through a number of pathways that remodel the mitochondrial proteome or alter mitochondrial content during times of stress or metabolic adaptation. Here, using yeast as a model system, we identify a new mitochondrial degradation system that remodels the mitochondrial proteome of aged cells. Unlike many common mitochondrial degradation pathways, this system selectively removes a subset of membrane proteins from the mitochondrial inner and outer membranes, while leaving the remainder of the organelle intact. Selective removal of preexisting proteins is achieved by sorting into a mitochondrial-derived compartment, or MDC, followed by release through mitochondrial fission and elimination by autophagy. Formation of MDCs requires the import receptors Tom70/71, and failure to form these structures exacerbates preexisting mitochondrial dysfunction, suggesting that the MDC pathway provides protection to mitochondria in times of stress.
- Andrew Dillin, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, University of California, Berkeley, United States
© 2016, Hughes et al.
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Today septins are considered as the fourth component of the cytoskeleton, with the Septin7 isoform playing a critical role in the formation of higher-order structures. While its importance has already been confirmed in several intracellular processes of different organs, very little is known about its role in skeletal muscle. Here, using Septin7 conditional knockdown (KD) mouse model, the C2C12 cell line, and enzymatically isolated adult muscle fibers, the organization and localization of septin filaments are revealed, and an ontogenesis-dependent expression of Septin7 is demonstrated. KD mice displayed a characteristic hunchback phenotype with skeletal deformities, reduction in in vivo and in vitro force generation, and disorganized mitochondrial networks. Furthermore, knockout of Septin7 in C2C12 cells resulted in complete loss of cell division while KD cells provided evidence that Septin7 is essential for proper myotube differentiation. These and the transient increase in Septin7 expression following muscle injury suggest that it may be involved in muscle regeneration and development.
The phagocytic receptor CED-1 mediates apoptotic cell recognition by phagocytic cells, enabling cell corpse clearance in Caenorhabditis elegans. Whether appropriate levels of CED-1 are maintained for executing the engulfment function remains unknown. Here, we identified the C. elegans E3 ubiquitin ligase tripartite motif containing-21 (TRIM-21) as a component of the CED-1 pathway for apoptotic cell clearance. When the NPXY motif of CED-1 was bound to the adaptor protein CED-6 or the YXXL motif of CED-1 was phosphorylated by tyrosine kinase SRC-1 and subsequently bound to the adaptor protein NCK-1 containing the SH2 domain, TRIM-21 functioned in conjunction with UBC-21 to catalyze K48-linked poly-ubiquitination on CED-1, targeting it for proteasomal degradation. In the absence of TRIM-21, CED-1 accumulated post-translationally and drove cell corpse degradation defects, as evidenced by direct binding to VHA-10. These findings reveal a unique mechanism for the maintenance of appropriate levels of CED-1 to regulate apoptotic cell clearance.