PTEN-induced kinase 1 (PINK1), which is required for mitochondrial homeostasis, is a gene product responsible for earlyonset Parkinson's disease (PD). Another early onset PD gene product, Parkin, has been suggested to function downstream of the PINK1 signalling pathway based on genetic studies in Drosophila. PINK1 is a serine/threonine kinase with a predicted mitochondrial target sequence and a probable transmembrane domain at the N-terminus, while Parkin is a RING-finger protein with ubiquitin-ligase (E3) activity. However, how PINK1 and Parkin regulate mitochondrial activity is largely unknown. To explore the molecular mechanism underlying the interaction between PINK1 and Parkin, we biochemically purified PINK1-binding proteins from human cultured cells and screened the genes encoding these binding proteins using Drosophila PINK1 (dPINK1) models to isolate a molecule(s) involved in the PINK1 pathology. Here we report that a PINK1- binding mitochondrial protein, PGAM5, modulates the PINK1 pathway. Loss of Drosophila PGAM5 (dPGAM5) can suppress the muscle degeneration, motor defects, and shorter lifespan that result from dPINK1 inactivation and that can be attributed to mitochondrial degeneration. However, dPGAM5 inactivation fails to modulate the phenotypes of parkin mutant flies. Conversely, ectopic expression of dPGAM5 exacerbated the dPINK1 and Drosophila parkin (dParkin) phenotypes. These results suggest that PGAM5 negatively regulates the PINK1 pathway related to maintenance of the mitochondria and, furthermore, that PGAM5 acts between PINK1 and Parkin, or functions independently of Parkin downstream of PINK1.
ASJC Scopus subject areas