Substitution of PINK1 Gly411 modulates substrate receptivity and turnover

Fabienne C. Fiesel, Dominika Fričová, Caleb S. Hayes, Mathew A. Coban, Roman Hudec, Jenny M. Bredenberg, Benjamin J. Broadway, Briana N. Markham, Tingxiang Yan, Paige K. Boneski, Gabriella Fiorino, Jens O. Watzlawik, Xu Hou, Arthur M. McCarty, Laura J. Lewis-Tuffin, Jun Zhong, Benjamin J. Madden, Alban Ordureau, Heeseon an, Andreas PuschmannZbigniew K. Wszolek, Owen A. Ross, J. Wade Harper, Thomas R. Caulfield, Wolfdieter Springer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The ubiquitin (Ub) kinase-ligase pair PINK1-PRKN mediates the degradation of damaged mitochondria by macroautophagy/autophagy (mitophagy). PINK1 surveils mitochondria and upon stress accumulates on the mitochondrial surface where it phosphorylates serine 65 of Ub to activate PRKN and to drive mitochondrial turnover. While loss of either PINK1 or PRKN is genetically linked to Parkinson disease (PD) and activating the pathway seems to have great therapeutic potential, there is no formal proof that stimulation of mitophagy is always beneficial. Here we used biochemical and cell biological methods to study single nucleotide variants in the activation loop of PINK1 to modulate the enzymatic function of this kinase. Structural modeling and in vitro kinase assays were used to investigate the molecular mechanism of the PINK1 variants. In contrast to the PD-linked PINK1G411S mutation that diminishes Ub kinase activity, we found that the PINK1G411A variant significantly boosted Ub phosphorylation beyond levels of PINK1 wild type. This resulted in augmented PRKN activation, mitophagy rates and increased viability after mitochondrial stress in midbrain-derived, gene-edited neurons. Mechanistically, the G411A variant stabilizes the kinase fold of PINK1 and transforms Ub to adopt the preferred, C-terminally retracted conformation for improved substrate turnover. In summary, we identify a critical role of residue 411 for substrate receptivity that may now be exploited for drug discovery to increase the enzymatic function of PINK1. The genetic substitution of Gly411 to Ala increases mitophagy and may be useful to confirm neuroprotection in vivo and might serve as a critical positive control during therapeutic development. Abbreviations: ATP: adenosine triphosphate; CCCP: carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenyl hydrazone; Ub-CR: ubiquitin with C-terminally retracted tail; CTD: C-terminal domain (of PINK1); ELISA: enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; HCI: high-content imaging; IB: immunoblot; IF: immunofluorescence; NPC: neuronal precursor cells; MDS: molecular dynamics simulation; PD: Parkinson disease; p-S65-Ub: ubiquitin phosphorylated at Ser65; RMSF: root mean scare fluctuation; TOMM: translocase of outer mitochondrial membrane; TVLN: ubiquitin with T66V and L67N mutation, mimics Ub-CR; Ub: ubiquitin; WT: wild-type.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAutophagy
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Keywords

  • Mitophagy
  • parkin
  • parkinson disease
  • PINK1
  • PRKN
  • ubiquitin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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