CHCHD10 mutations are linked to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, but their mode of action is unclear. In a 29‐year‐old patient with rapid disease progression, we discovered a novel mutation (Q108P) in a conserved residue within the coiled‐coil‐helix‐coiled‐coil‐helix (CHCH) domain. The aggressive clinical phenotype prompted us to probe its pathogenicity. Unlike the wild‐type protein, mitochondrial import of CHCHD10 Q108P was blocked nearly completely resulting in diffuse cytoplasmic localization and reduced stability. Other CHCHD10 variants reported in patients showed impaired mitochondrial import (C122R) or clustering within mitochondria (especially G66V and E127K) often associated with reduced expression. Truncation experiments suggest mitochondrial import of CHCHD10 is mediated by the CHCH domain rather than the proposed N‐terminal mitochondrial targeting signal. Knockdown of Mia40, which introduces disulfide bonds into CHCH domain proteins, blocked mitochondrial import of CHCHD10. Overexpression of Mia40 rescued mitochondrial import of CHCHD10 Q108P by enhancing disulfide‐bond formation. Since reduction in CHCHD10 inhibits respiration, mutations in its CHCH domain may cause aggressive disease by impairing mitochondrial import. Our data suggest Mia40 upregulation as a potential therapeutic salvage pathway.
Embo Molecular Medicine – Wiley
Published: Jan 1, 2018
Keywords: ; ; ;
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