An ALS-linked mutation in TDP-43 disrupts normal protein interactions in the motor neuron response to oxidative stress.
Feneberg E., Gordon D., Thompson AG., Finelli MJ., Dafinca R., Candalija A., Charles PD., Mäger I., Wood MJ., Fischer R., Kessler BM., Gray E., Turner MR., Talbot K.
TDP-43 pathology is a key feature of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), but the mechanisms linking TDP-43 to altered cellular function and neurodegeneration remain unclear. We have recently described a mouse model in which human wild-type or mutant TDP-43 are expressed at low levels and where altered stress granule formation is a robust phenotype of TDP-43M337V/- expressing cells. In the present study we use this model to investigate the functional connectivity of human TDP-43 in primary motor neurons under resting conditions and in response to oxidative stress. The interactome of human TDP-43WT or TDP-43M337V was compared by mass spectrometry, and gene ontology enrichment analysis identified pathways dysregulated by the M337V mutation. We found that under normal conditions the interactome of human TDP-43WT was enriched for proteins involved in transcription, translation and poly(A)-RNA binding. In response to oxidative stress, TDP-43WT recruits proteins of the endoplasmic reticulum and endosomal-extracellular transport pathways, interactions which are reduced in the presence of the M337V mutation. Specifically, TDP-43M337V impaired protein-protein interactions involved in stress granule formation including reduced binding to the translation initiation factors Poly(A)-binding protein and Eif4a1 and the endoplasmic reticulum chaperone Grp78. The M337V mutation also affected interactions involved in endosomal-extracellular transport and this this was associated with reduced extracellular vesicle secretion in primary motor neurons from TDP-43M337V/- mice and in human iPSCs-derived motor neurons. Taken together, our analysis highlights a TDP-43 interaction network in motor neurons and demonstrates that an ALS associated mutation may alter the interactome to drive aberrant pathways involved in the pathogenesis of ALS.