Temporal dynamics of PARK2/parkin and OPTN/optineurin recruitment during the mitophagy of damaged mitochondria

Yvette C. Wong, Erika L.F. Holzbaur*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Damaged mitochondria are selectively degraded via autophagy in a regulated pathway known as mitophagy. Parkinson disease-linked proteins PINK1 (PTEN induced putative kinase 1) and PARK2 (parkin RBR E3 ubiquitin protein ligase) are recruited to the outer mitochondrial membrane upon mitochondrial damage, leading to the PARK2-mediated ubiquitination of mitochondrial proteins. Here, we discuss our recent work demonstrating that OPTN (optineurin) is recruited to damaged mitochondria, serving as an autophagy receptor for autophagosome formation around mitochondria. Using high-resolution live-cell imaging, we find that OPTN is recruited to ubiquitinated mitochondria downstream of PARK2, and induces autophagosome assembly around mitochondria via its LC3-interacting region. Mutations in OPTN are linked to both glaucoma and ALS (amyotrophic lateral sclerosis), and an ALS-associated E478G mutation in OPTN's ubiquitin binding domain leads to defective mitophagy and accumulation of damaged mitochondria. Importantly, our results highlight a role for mitophagy defects in ALS pathogenesis, and demonstrate that defects in the same pathway for mitochondrial homeostasis are causal for both familial Parkinson disease and ALS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)422-424
Number of pages3
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)
  • Autophagy receptor
  • Glaucoma
  • Mitochondria
  • Mitophagy
  • Optineurin
  • Parkin
  • Parkinson disease

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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