Tau promotes neurodegeneration via DRP1 mislocalization in vivo.
ABSTRACT Mitochondrial abnormalities have been documented in Alzheimer's disease and related neurodegenerative disorders, but the causal relationship between mitochondrial changes and neurodegeneration, and the specific mechanisms promoting mitochondrial dysfunction, are unclear. Here, we find that expression of human tau results in elongation of mitochondria in both Drosophila and mouse neurons. Elongation is accompanied by mitochondrial dysfunction and cell cycle-mediated cell death, which can be rescued in vivo by genetically restoring the proper balance of mitochondrial fission and fusion. We have previously demonstrated that stabilization of actin by tau is critical for neurotoxicity of the protein. Here, we demonstrate a conserved role for actin and myosin in regulating mitochondrial fission and show that excess actin stabilization inhibits association of the fission protein DRP1 with mitochondria, leading to mitochondrial elongation and subsequent neurotoxicity. Our results thus identify actin-mediated disruption of mitochondrial dynamics as a direct mechanism of tau toxicity in neurons in vivo.
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ABSTRACT: In addition to established membrane remodeling roles in various cellular locations, actin has recently emerged as a participant in mitochondrial fission. However, the underlying mechanisms of its participation remain largely unknown. We report that transient de novo F-actin assembly on the mitochondria occurs upon induction of mitochondrial fission and F-actin accumulates on the mitochondria without forming detectable submitochondrial foci. Impairing mitochondrial division through Drp1 knockout or inhibition prolonged the time of mitochondrial accumulation of F-actin and also led to abnormal mitochondrial accumulation of the actin regulatory factors cortactin, cofilin, and Arp2/3 complexes, suggesting that disassembly of mitochondrial F-actin depends on Drp1 activity. Furthermore, down-regulation of actin regulatory proteins led to elongation of mitochondria, associated with mitochondrial accumulation of Drp1. In addition, depletion of cortactin inhibited Mfn2 down-regulation- or FCCP-induced mitochondrial fragmentation. These data indicate that the dynamic assembly and disassembly of F-actin on the mitochondria participates in Drp1-mediated mitochondrial fission. © 2015 Li et al.The Journal of Cell Biology 12/2014; 208(1). DOI:10.1083/jcb.201404050 · 9.69 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: MAP6 proteins (MAP6s), which include MAP6-N (also called Stable Tubule Only Polypeptide, or STOP) and MAP6d1 (MAP6 domain-containing protein 1, also called STOP-Like protein 21 kD, or SL21), bind to and stabilize microtubules. MAP6 deletion in mice severely alters integrated brain functions and is associated with synaptic defects, suggesting that MAP6s may also have alternative cellular roles. MAP6s reportedly associate with the Golgi apparatus through palmitoylation of their N-terminal domain, and specific isoforms have been shown to bind actin. Here, we use heterologous systems to investigate several biochemical properties of MAP6 proteins. We demonstrate that the three N-terminal cysteines of MAP6d1 are palmitoylated by a subset of DHHC-type palmitoylating enzymes. Analysis of the subcellular localization of palmitoylated MAP6d1, including electron microscopic analysis, reveals possible localization to the Golgi and the plasma membrane but no association with the endoplasmic reticulum. Moreover, we observed localization of MAP6d1 to mitochondria, which requires the N-terminus of the protein but does not require palmitoylation. We show that endogenous MAP6d1 localized at mitochondria in mature mice neurons as well as at the outer membrane and in the intermembrane space of purified mouse mitochondria. Last, we found that MAP6d1 can multimerize via a microtubule-binding module. Interestingly, most of these properties of MAP6d1 are shared by MAP6-N. Together, these results describe several properties of MAP6 proteins, including their intercellular localization and multimerization activity, which may be relevant to neuronal differentiation and synaptic functions.PLoS ONE 12/2014; 9(12):e114905. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0114905 · 3.53 Impact Factor
Article: Variations in brain DNA[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: It is assumed that DNA sequences are conserved in the diverse cell types present in a multicellular organism like the human being. Thus, in order to compare the sequences in the genome of DNA from different individuals, nucleic acid is commonly isolated from a single tissue. In this regard, blood cells are widely used for this purpose because of their availability. Thus blood DNA has been used to study genetic familiar diseases that affect other tissues and organs, such as the liver, heart, and brain. While this approach is valid for the identification of familial diseases in which mutations are present in parental germinal cells and, therefore, in all the cells of a given organism, it is not suitable to identify sporadic diseases in which mutations might occur in specific somatic cells. This review addresses somatic DNA variations in different tissues or cells (mainly in the brain) of single individuals and discusses whether the dogma of DNA invariance between cell types is indeed correct. We will also discuss how single nucleotide somatic variations arise, focusing on the presence of specific DNA mutations in the brain.