BBA - Molecular Basis of Disease (v.1842, #8)

Mitochondria manufacture and release metabolites and manage calcium during neuronal activity and synaptic transmission, but whether long term alterations in mitochondrial function contribute to the neuronal plasticity underlying changes in organism behavior patterns is still poorly understood. Although normal neuronal plasticity may determine learning, in contrast a persistent decline in synaptic strength or neuronal excitability may portend neurite retraction and eventual somatic death. Anti-death proteins such as Bcl-xL not only provide neuroprotection at the neuronal soma during cell death stimuli, but also appear to enhance neurotransmitter release and synaptic growth and development. It is proposed that Bcl-xL performs these functions through its ability to regulate mitochondrial release of bioenergetic metabolites and calcium, and through its ability to rapidly alter mitochondrial positioning and morphology. Bcl-xL also interacts with proteins that directly alter synaptic vesicle recycling. Bcl-xL translocates acutely to sub-cellular membranes during neuronal activity to achieve changes in synaptic efficacy. After stressful stimuli, pro-apoptotic cleaved delta N Bcl-xL (ΔN Bcl-xL) induces mitochondrial ion channel activity leading to synaptic depression and this is regulated by caspase activation. During physiological states of decreased synaptic stimulation, loss of mitochondrial Bcl-xL and low level caspase activation occur prior to the onset of long term decline in synaptic efficacy. The degree to which Bcl-xL changes mitochondrial membrane permeability may control the direction of change in synaptic strength. The small molecule Bcl-xL inhibitor ABT-737 has been useful in defining the role of Bcl-xL in synaptic processes. Bcl-xL is crucial to the normal health of neurons and synapses and its malfunction may contribute to neurodegenerative disease. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Synapse; Mitochondria; ATP synthase; Bcl-xL; Neurodegenerative disease; Synaptic plasticity;

In vivo functions of Drp1: Lessons learned from yeast genetics and mouse knockouts by Hiromi Sesaki; Yoshihiro Adachi; Yusuke Kageyama; Kie Itoh; Miho Iijima (1179-1185).
Mitochondria grow, divide, and fuse in cells. Mitochondrial division is critical for the maintenance of the structure and function of mitochondria. Alterations in this process have been linked to many human diseases, including peripheral neuropathies and aging-related neurological disorders. In this review, we discuss recent progress inmitochondrial division by focusing on molecular and invivo analyses of the evolutionarily conserved, centralcomponent of mitochondrial division, dynamin-related protein 1 (Drp1), in the yeast and mouse model organisms. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Mitochondrion; Membrane fission; Dynamin-related GTPase; Neurodegeneration; Yeast; Mouse;

p53 and mitochondrial function in neurons by David B. Wang; Chizuru Kinoshita; Yoshito Kinoshita; Richard S. Morrison (1186-1197).
The p53 tumor suppressor plays a central role in dictating cell survival and death as a cellular sensor for a myriad of stresses including DNA damage, oxidative and nutritional stress, ischemia and disruption of nucleolar function. Activation of p53-dependent apoptosis leads to mitochondrial apoptotic changes via the intrinsic and extrinsic pathways triggering cell death execution most notably by release of cytochrome c and activation of the caspase cascade. Although it was previously believed that p53 induces apoptotic mitochondrial changes exclusively through transcription-dependent mechanisms, recent studies suggest that p53 also regulates apoptosis via a transcription-independent action at the mitochondria. Recent evidence further suggests that p53 can regulate necrotic cell death and autophagic activity including mitophagy. An increasing number of cytosolic and mitochondrial proteins involved in mitochondrial metabolism and respiration are regulated by p53, which influences mitochondrial ROS production as well. Cellular redox homeostasis is also directly regulated by p53 through modified expression of pro- and anti-oxidant proteins. Proper regulation of mitochondrial size and shape through fission and fusion assures optimal mitochondrial bioenergetic function while enabling adequate mitochondrial transport to accommodate local energy demands unique to neuronal architecture. Abnormal regulation of mitochondrial dynamics has been increasingly implicated in neurodegeneration, where elevated levels of p53 may have a direct contribution as the expression of some fission/fusion proteins are directly regulated by p53. Thus, p53 may have a much wider influence on mitochondrial integrity and function than one would expect from its well-established ability to transcriptionally induce mitochondrial apoptosis. However, much of the evidence demonstrating that p53 can influence mitochondria through nuclear, cytosolic or intra-mitochondrial sites of action has yet to be confirmed in neurons. Nonetheless, as mitochondria are essential for supporting normal neuronal functions and in initiating/propagating cell death signaling, it appears certain that the mitochondria-related functions of p53 will have broader implications than previously thought in acute and progressive neurological conditions, providing new therapeutic targets for treatment. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: p53; Mitochondria; Mitochondrial dynamics; Apoptosis; Mitophagy;

Mitochondrial genome changes and neurodegenerative diseases by Milena Pinto; Carlos T. Moraes (1198-1207).
Mitochondria are essential organelles within the cell where most of the energy production occurs by the oxidative phosphorylation system (OXPHOS). Critical components of the OXPHOS are encoded by the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and therefore, mutations involving this genome can be deleterious to the cell. Post-mitotic tissues, such as muscle and brain, are most sensitive to mtDNA changes, due to their high energy requirements and non-proliferative status. It has been proposed that mtDNA biological features and location make it vulnerable to mutations, which accumulate over time. However, although the role of mtDNA damage has been conclusively connected to neuronal impairment in mitochondrial diseases, its role in age-related neurodegenerative diseases remains speculative. Here we review the pathophysiology of mtDNA mutations leading to neurodegeneration and discuss the insights obtained by studying mouse models of mtDNA dysfunction. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Mitochondrion; mtDNA; Encephalopathy;

Oxidative damage contributes to pathogenesis in many neurodegenerative diseases. As the indicator and regulator of oxidative stress, the Nrf2-ARE pathway has been shown dynamic changes and examined for its neuroprotective role in many cases. In this review, we summarize the progress of the Nrf2-ARE pathway in combating toxicity induced from typical misfolded protein aggregates in neurodegenerative diseases, and specifically the effects on the clearance of protein aggregates. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Oxidative stress; Nrf2-ARE pathway; Misfolded proteins; Neurodegenerative diseases;

The Alzheimer's disease mitochondrial cascade hypothesis: Progress and perspectives by Russell H. Swerdlow; Jeffrey M. Burns; Shaharyar M. Khan (1219-1231).
Ten years ago we first proposed the Alzheimer's disease (AD) mitochondrial cascade hypothesis. This hypothesis maintains that gene inheritance defines an individual's baseline mitochondrial function; inherited and environmental factors determine rates at which mitochondrial function changes over time; and baseline mitochondrial function and mitochondrial change rates influence AD chronology. Our hypothesis unequivocally states in sporadic, late-onset AD, mitochondrial function affects amyloid precursor protein (APP) expression, APP processing, or beta amyloid (Aβ) accumulation and argues if an amyloid cascade truly exists, mitochondrial function triggers it. We now review the state of the mitochondrial cascade hypothesis, and discuss it in the context of recent AD biomarker studies, diagnostic criteria, and clinical trials. Our hypothesis predicts that biomarker changes reflect brain aging, new AD definitions clinically stage brain aging, and removing brain Aβ at any point will marginally impact cognitive trajectories. Our hypothesis, therefore, offers unique perspective into what sporadic, late-onset AD is and how to best treat it. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Aging; Amyloid; Brain; Dementia; Alzheimer's disease; Mitochondria;

Recent advances in the application of metabolomics to Alzheimer's Disease by Eugenia Trushina; Michelle M. Mielke (1232-1239).
The pathophysiological changes associated with Alzheimer's Disease (AD) begin decades before the emergence of clinical symptoms. Understanding the early mechanisms associated with AD pathology is, therefore, especially important for identifying disease-modifying therapeutic targets. While the majority of AD clinical trials to date have focused on anti-amyloid-beta (Aβ) treatments, other therapeutic approaches may be necessary. The ability to monitor changes in cellular networks that include both Aβ and non-Aβ pathways is essential to advance our understanding of the etiopathogenesis of AD and subsequent development of cognitive symptoms and dementia. Metabolomics is a powerful tool that detects perturbations in the metabolome, a pool of metabolites that reflects changes downstream of genomic, transcriptomic and proteomic fluctuations, and represents an accurate biochemical profile of the organism in health and disease. The application of metabolomics could help to identify biomarkers for early AD diagnosis, to discover novel therapeutic targets, and to monitor therapeutic response and disease progression. Moreover, given the considerable parallel between mouse and human metabolism, the use of metabolomics provides ready translation of animal research into human studies for accelerated drug design. In this review, we will summarize current progress in the application of metabolomics in both animal models and in humans to further understanding of the mechanisms involved in AD pathogenesis. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Alzheimer's Disease; Biomarkers; Metabolomics; Plasma; Cerebrospinal fluid; Animal models;

Oxidative stress and mitochondrial dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease by Xinglong Wang; Wenzhang Wang; Li Li; George Perry; Hyoung-gon Lee; Xiongwei Zhu (1240-1247).
Alzheimer's disease (AD) exhibits extensive oxidative stress throughout the body, being detected peripherally as well as associated with the vulnerable regions of the brain affected in disease. Abundant evidence not only demonstrates the full spectrum of oxidative damage to neuronal macromolecules, but also reveals the occurrence of oxidative events early in the course of the disease and prior to the formation of the pathology, which support an important role of oxidative stress in AD. As a disease of abnormal aging, AD demonstrates oxidative damage at levels that significantly surpass that of elderly controls, which suggests the involvement of additional factor(s). Structurally and functionally damaged mitochondria, which are more proficient at producing reactive oxygen species but less so in ATP, are also an early and prominent feature of the disease. Since mitochondria are also vulnerable to oxidative stress, it is likely that a vicious downward spiral involving the interactions between mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress contributes to the initiation and/or amplification of reactive oxygen species that is critical to the pathogenesis of AD. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Alzheimer disease; Oxidative stress; Mitochondrial dysfunction; Mitochondrial fission; Mitochondrial fusion; DLP1;

Abeta, oxidative stress in Alzheimer disease: Evidence based on proteomics studies by Aaron M. Swomley; Sarah Förster; Jeriel T. Keeney; Judy Triplett; Zhaoshu Zhang; Rukhsana Sultana; D. Allan Butterfield (1248-1257).
The initiation and progression of Alzheimer disease (AD) is a complex process not yet fully understood. While many hypotheses have been provided as to the cause of the disease, the exact mechanisms remain elusive and difficult to verify. Proteomic applications in disease models of AD have provided valuable insights into the molecular basis of this disorder, demonstrating that on a protein level, disease progression impacts numerous cellular processes such as energy production, cellular structure, signal transduction, synaptic function, mitochondrial function, cell cycle progression, and proteasome function. Each of these cellular functions contributes to the overall health of the cell, and the dysregulation of one or more could contribute to the pathology and clinical presentation in AD. In this review, foci reside primarily on the amyloid β-peptide (Aβ) induced oxidative stress hypothesis and the proteomic studies that have been conducted by our laboratory and others that contribute to the overall understanding of this devastating neurodegenerative disease. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Alzheimer disease; Amyloid-β; Redox proteomics; Oxidative stress; Methionine-35;

March separate, strike together — Role of phosphorylated TAU in mitochondrial dysfunction in Alzheimer's disease by Anne Eckert; Rebecca Nisbet; Amandine Grimm; Jürgen Götz (1258-1266).
The energy demand and calcium buffering requirements of the brain are met by the high number of mitochondria in neurons and in these, especially at the synapses. Mitochondria are the major producer of reactive oxygen species (ROS); at the same time, they are damaged by ROS that are induced by abnormal protein aggregates that characterize human neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease (AD). Because synaptic mitochondria are long-lived, any damage exerted by these aggregates impacts severely on neuronal function. Here we review how increased TAU, a defining feature of AD and related tauopathies, impairs mitochondrial function by following the principle: ‘March separate, strike together!’ In the presence of amyloid-β, TAU's toxicity is augmented suggesting synergistic pathomechanisms. In order to restore mitochondrial functions in neurodegeneration as a means of therapeutic intervention it will be important to integrate the various aspects of dysfunction and get a handle on targeting distinct cell types and subcellular compartments. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Alzheimer's disease; Axonal transport; DRP1; Mitochondrion; Tauopathy;

Mitochondrial permeability transition pore is a potential drug target for neurodegeneration by Valasani Koteswara Rao; Emily A. Carlson; Shirley Shidu Yan (1267-1272).
Mitochondrial permeability transition pore (mPTP) plays a central role in alterations of mitochondrial structure and function leading to neuronal injury relevant to aging and neurodegenerative diseases including Alzheimer's disease (AD). mPTP putatively consists of the voltage-dependent anion channel (VDAC), the adenine nucleotide translocator (ANT) and cyclophilin D (CypD). Reactive oxygen species (ROS) increase intra-cellular calcium and enhance the formation of mPTP that leads to neuronal cell death in AD. CypD-dependent mPTP can play a crucial role in ischemia/reperfusion injury. The interaction of amyloid beta peptide (Aβ) with CypD potentiates mitochondrial and neuronal perturbation. This interaction triggers the formation of mPTP, resulting in decreased mitochondrial membrane potential, impaired mitochondrial respiration function, increased oxidative stress, release of cytochrome c, and impaired axonal mitochondrial transport. Thus, the CypD-dependent mPTP is directly linked to the cellular and synaptic perturbations observed in the pathogenesis of AD. Designing small molecules to block this interaction would lessen the effects of Aβ neurotoxicity. This review summarizes the recent progress on mPTP and its potential therapeutic target for neurodegenerative diseases including AD. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Amyloid β; Alzheimer's disease; Cyclophilin D; Mitochondrial permeability transition pore; Neurodegeneration;

ERKed by LRRK2: A cell biological perspective on hereditary and sporadic Parkinson's disease by Manish Verma; Erin K. Steer; Charleen T. Chu (1273-1281).
The leucine rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2/dardarin) is implicated in autosomal dominant familial and sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD); mutations in LRRK2 account for up to 40% of PD cases in some populations. LRRK2 is a large protein with a kinase domain, a GTPase domain, and multiple potential protein interaction domains. As such, delineating the functional pathways for LRRK2 and mechanisms by which PD-linked variants contribute to age-related neurodegeneration could result in pharmaceutically tractable therapies. A growing number of recent studies implicate dysregulation of mitogen activated protein kinases 3 and 1 (also known as ERK1/2) as possible downstream mediators of mutant LRRK2 effects. As these master regulators of growth, differentiation, neuronal plasticity and cell survival have also been implicated in other PD models, a set of common cell biological pathways may contribute to neuronal susceptibility in PD. Here, we review the literature on several major cellular pathways impacted by LRRK2 mutations – autophagy, microtubule/cytoskeletal dynamics, and protein synthesis – in context of potential signaling crosstalk involving the ERK1/2 and Wnt signaling pathways. Emerging implications for calcium homeostasis, mitochondrial biology and synaptic dysregulation are discussed in relation to LRRK2 interactions with other PD gene products. It has been shown that substantia nigra neurons in human PD and Lewy body dementia patients exhibit cytoplasmic accumulations of ERK1/2 in mitochondria, autophagosomes and bundles of intracellular fibrils. Both experimental and human tissue data implicate pathogenic changes in ERK1/2 signaling in sporadic, toxin-based and mutant LRRK2 settings, suggesting engagement of common cell biological pathways by divergent PD etiologies. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Parkinson disease; LRRK2; Autophagy; Cytoskeleton; MAPK; Mitophagy;

Mitochondria-targeted antioxidants for treatment of Parkinson's disease: Preclinical and clinical outcomes by Huajun Jin; Arthi Kanthasamy; Anamitra Ghosh; Vellareddy Anantharam; Balaraman Kalyanaraman; Anumantha G. Kanthasamy (1282-1294).
Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurodegenerative disease in the elderly, and no cure or disease-modifying therapies exist. Several lines of evidence suggest that mitochondrial dysfunction and oxidative stress have a central role in the dopaminergic neurodegeneration of Parkinson's disease. In this context, mitochondria-targeted therapies that improve mitochondrial function may have great promise in the prevention and treatment of Parkinson's disease. In this review, we discuss the recent developments in mitochondria-targeted antioxidants and their potential beneficial effects as a therapy for ameliorating mitochondrial dysfunction in Parkinson's disease. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Mitochondrial dysfunction; Mitochondria-targeted antioxidant; Neuroprotection; Oxidative stress; Parkinson's disease;

Role of mitochondria in mutant SOD1 linked amyotrophic lateral sclerosis by Wenzhi Tan; Piera Pasinelli; Davide Trotti (1295-1301).
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is a fatal neurodegenerative disease with an adult onset characterized by loss of both upper and lower motor neurons. In ~ 10% of cases, patients developed ALS with an apparent genetic linkage (familial ALS or fALS). Approximately 20% of fALS displays mutations in the SOD1 gene encoding superoxide dismutase 1. There are many proposed cellular and molecular mechanisms among which, mitochondrial dysfunctions occur early, prior to symptoms occurrence. In this review, we modeled the effect of mutant SOD1 protein via the formation of a toxic complex with Bcl2 on mitochondrial bioenergetics. Furthermore, we discuss that the shutdown of ATP permeation through mitochondrial outer membrane could lead to both respiration inhibition and temporary mitochondrial hyperpolarization. Moreover, we reviewed mitochondrial calcium signaling, oxidative stress, fission and fusion, autophagy and apoptosis in mutant SOD1-linked ALS. Functional defects in mitochondria appear early before symptoms are manifested in ALS. Therefore, mitochondrial dysfunction is a promising therapeutic target in ALS. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled: Misfolded Proteins, Mitochondrial Dysfunction, and Neurodegenerative Diseases.
Keywords: Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis; Mitochondria; Oxidative stress;