Experimental cell research

A yeast model of the Parkinson's disease-associated protein Parkin.

PMID 25728007


Mutations in Parkin, an E3 ubiquitin ligase, are associated to autosomal recessive Parkinson's disease (PD). Parkin has been mainly implicated, along with Pink1, in mitochondrial autophagy in response to stress. In this study, a yeast model was developed to analyse the biological function of human Parkin. We observed that Parkin increases yeast chronological lifespan and oxidative stress resistance, through a mitochondrial-dependent pathway. Moreover, in response to H2O2, Parkin translocate to mitochondria, leading to a higher mitochondrial degradation. Parkin-induced H2O2 resistance is dependent on the autophagic pathway and on the mitochondrial protein Por1p. Although expression of Pink1 induces an H2O2 resistance phenotype similar to Parkin, co-expression of both proteins does not result in a synergistic effect. Concerning H2O2 resistance, this may indicate that these two proteins independently affect the same pathway. Altogether, this work establishes a yeast model for Parkin, which may provide new insights on Parkin function and potential mechanisms of pathogenicity.