PINK1 loss-of-function mutations affect mitochondrial complex I activity via NdufA10 ubiquinone uncoupling

Science. 2014 Apr 11;344(6180):203-7. doi: 10.1126/science.1249161. Epub 2014 Mar 20.


Under resting conditions, Pink1 knockout cells and cells derived from patients with PINK1 mutations display a loss of mitochondrial complex I reductive activity, causing a decrease in the mitochondrial membrane potential. Analyzing the phosphoproteome of complex I in liver and brain from Pink1(-/-) mice, we found specific loss of phosphorylation of serine-250 in complex I subunit NdufA10. Phosphorylation of serine-250 was needed for ubiquinone reduction by complex I. Phosphomimetic NdufA10 reversed Pink1 deficits in mouse knockout cells and rescued mitochondrial depolarization and synaptic transmission defects in pink(B9)-null mutant Drosophila. Complex I deficits and adenosine triphosphate synthesis were also rescued in cells derived from PINK1 patients. Thus, this evolutionary conserved pathway may contribute to the pathogenic cascade that eventually leads to Parkinson's disease in patients with PINK1 mutations.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Brain / enzymology
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism*
  • Electron Transport Complex I / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Liver / enzymology
  • Membrane Potential, Mitochondrial / genetics
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Mutation
  • NADH Dehydrogenase / metabolism*
  • Parkinson Disease / enzymology*
  • Parkinson Disease / genetics*
  • Phosphorylation / genetics
  • Protein Kinases / genetics*
  • Proteome
  • Serine / chemistry
  • Serine / metabolism


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • ND-42 protein, Drosophila
  • Proteome
  • Serine
  • NADH Dehydrogenase
  • NdufA10 protein, mouse
  • Protein Kinases
  • PTEN-induced putative kinase
  • Electron Transport Complex I