The E3 Ubiquitin Ligase SCF Cyclin F Promotes Sequestosome-1/p62 Insolubility and Foci Formation and is Dysregulated in ALS and FTD Pathogenesis

Publication Name

Molecular Neurobiology


Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS)- and frontotemporal dementia (FTD)-linked mutations in CCNF have been shown to cause dysregulation to protein homeostasis. CCNF encodes for cyclin F, which is part of the cyclin F-E3 ligase complex SCFcyclinF known to ubiquitylate substrates for proteasomal degradation. In this study, we identified a function of cyclin F to regulate substrate solubility and show how cyclin F mechanistically underlies ALS and FTD disease pathogenesis. We demonstrated that ALS and FTD-associated protein sequestosome-1/p62 (p62) was a canonical substrate of cyclin F which was ubiquitylated by the SCFcyclinF complex. We found that SCFcyclin F ubiquitylated p62 at lysine(K)281, and that K281 regulated the propensity of p62 to aggregate. Further, cyclin F expression promoted the aggregation of p62 into the insoluble fraction, which corresponded to an increased number of p62 foci. Notably, ALS and FTD-linked mutant cyclin F p.S621G aberrantly ubiquitylated p62, dysregulated p62 solubility in neuronal-like cells, patient-derived fibroblasts and induced pluripotent stem cells and dysregulated p62 foci formation. Consistently, motor neurons from patient spinal cord tissue exhibited increased p62 ubiquitylation. We suggest that the p.S621G mutation impairs the functions of cyclin F to promote p62 foci formation and shift p62 into the insoluble fraction, which may be associated to aberrant mutant cyclin F-mediated ubiquitylation of p62. Given that p62 dysregulation is common across the ALS and FTD spectrum, our study provides insights into p62 regulation and demonstrates that ALS and FTD-linked cyclin F mutant p.S621G can drive p62 pathogenesis associated with ALS and FTD.

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Funding Sponsor

Motor Neurone Disease Research Australia



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