Nlrx1 regulates neuronal cell death
Imbeault, Emilie; M. Mahvelati, Tara; Braun, Ralf; Gris, Pavel; Gris, Denis
Gris lab of Neuroimmunology
Background Regulation of cell death during neurodegeneration is one of the key factors that play a role in the speed at which a disease progresses. Out of several cellular pathways responsible for this progression, necrosis and apoptosis are situated on the opposite spectrum of cell death regulation. Necrosis produces an environment that promotes inflammation and cytotoxicity and apoptosis is a highly organized process that maintains tissue homeostasis. A recently discovered protein, Nlrx1, regulates inflammatory and cell death responses during infection. Findings Using transfections of N2A cell line, we demonstrate that Nlrx1 redirects cells away from necrosis and towards an apoptotic pathway following rotenone treatments. In addition, Nlrx1 promotes DRP1 phosphorylation and increases mitochondrial fission. Conclusion Our results suggest a novel molecular pathway for regulating mitochondrial dynamics and neuronal death. Nlrx1 may play an important role in neurodegenerative diseases, where necrosis is a prominent factor.