Mahogunin ring finger 1 confers cytoprotection against mutant SOD1 aggresomes and is defective in an ALS mouse model
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Proteotoxicity of misfolded, disease-causing proteins is deeply implicated in the pathomechanisms for neurodegenerative diseases including copper-zinc superoxide dismutase (SOD1)-linked amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). However, the precise cellular quality control (QC) mechanisms against aggregation of misfolded mutant SOD1 proteins remain elusive. Here, we found that the Mahogunin ring finger-1 (MGRN1) E3 ubiquitin ligase, which catalyzes mono-ubiquitination to the substrate, was dysregulated in the cellular and mouse models of ALS and that it preferentially interacted with various mutant forms of SOD1. Intriguingly, the motor neurons of presymptomatic ALS mice have diminished MGRN1 cytoplasmic distribution. MGRN1 was partially recruited to mutant SOD1 inclusions where they were positive for p62 and Lamp2. Moreover, overexpression of MGRN1 reduced mutant SOD1 aggregation and alleviated its proteotoxic effects on cells. Taken together, our findings suggest that MGRN1 contributes to the clearance of toxic mutant SOD1 inclusions likely through autophagic pathway, and, most likely, the sequestration of MGRN1 sensitizes motor neurons to degeneration in the ALS mouse model. Furthermore, the present study identifies the MGRN1-mediated protein QC mechanism as a novel therapeutic target in neurodegenerative diseases.
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