Ubiquitylation of outer mitochondrial membrane (OMM) proteins is closely related to the onset of familial Parkinson's disease. Typically, a reduction in the mitochondrial membrane potential results in Parkin-mediated ubiquitylation of OMM proteins, which are then targeted for proteasomal and mitophagic degradation. The role of ubiquitylation of OMM proteins with non-degradative fates, however, remains poorly understood. In this study, we find that the mitochondrial E3 ubiquitin ligase MITOL/March5 translocates from depolarized mitochondria to peroxisomes following mitophagy stimulation. This unusual redistribution is mediated by peroxins (peroxisomal biogenesis factors) Pex3/16 and requires the E3 ligase activity of Parkin, which ubiquitylates K268 in the MITOL C-terminus, essential for p97/VCP-dependent mitochondrial extraction of MITOL. These findings imply that ubiquitylation directs peroxisomal translocation of MITOL upon mitophagy stimulation and reveal a novel role for ubiquitin as a sorting signal that allows certain specialized proteins to escape from damaged mitochondria.
Keywords: VCP; March5; PINK1- and Parkin-mediated mitophagy; peroxin; ubiquitin.
© 2019 The Authors. Published under the terms of the CC BY 4.0 license.