Plectin isoform P1b and P1d deficiencies differentially affect mitochondrial morphology and function in skeletal muscle.

Human molecular genetics

PubMedID: 26019234

Winter L, Kuznetsov AV, Grimm M, Zeöld A, Fischer I, Wiche G. Plectin isoform P1b and P1d deficiencies differentially affect mitochondrial morphology and function in skeletal muscle. Hum Mol Genet. 2015;.
Plectin, a versatile 500-kDa cytolinker protein, is essential for muscle fiber integrity and function. The most common disease caused by mutations in the human plectin gene, epidermolysis bullosa simplex with muscular dystrophy (EBS-MD), is characterized by severe skin blistering and progressive muscular dystrophy. Besides displaying pathological desmin-positive protein aggregates and degenerative changes in the myofibrillar apparatus, skeletal muscle specimens of EBS-MD patients and plectin-deficient mice are characterized by massive mitochondrial alterations. In this study, we demonstrate that structural and functional alterations of mitochondria are a primary aftermath of plectin deficiency in muscle, contributing to myofiber degeneration. We found that in skeletal muscle of conditional plectin knockout mice (MCK-Cre/cKO), mitochondrial content was reduced, and mitochondria were aggregated in sarcoplasmic and subsarcolemmal regions and were no longer associated with Z-disks. Additionally, decreased mitochondrial citrate synthase activity, respiratory function and altered adenosine diphosphate kinetics were characteristic of plectin-deficient muscles. To analyze a mechanistic link between plectin deficiency and mitochondrial alterations, we comparatively assessed mitochondrial morphology and function in whole muscle and teased muscle fibers of wild-type, MCK-Cre/cKO and plectin isoform-specific knockout mice that were lacking just one isoform (either P1b or P1d) while expressing all others. Monitoring morphological alterations of mitochondria, an isoform P1b-specific phenotype affecting the mitochondrial fusion-fission machinery and manifesting with upregulated mitochondrial fusion-associated protein mitofusin-2 could be identified. Our results show that the depletion of distinct plectin isoforms affects mitochondrial network organization and function in different ways.