Metal-Binding Propensity in the Mitochondrial Dynamin-Related Protein 1

J Membr Biol. 2022 Jun;255(2-3):143-150. doi: 10.1007/s00232-022-00221-5. Epub 2022 Feb 26.


Dynamin-related protein1 (Drp1) functions to divide mitochondria and peroxisomes by binding specific adaptor proteins and lipids, both of which are integral to the limiting organellar membrane. In efforts to understand how such multivalent interactions regulate Drp1 functions, in vitro reconstitution schemes rely on recruiting soluble portions of the adaptors appended with genetically encoded polyhistidine tags onto membranes containing Ni2+-bound chelator lipids. These strategies are facile and circumvent the challenge in working with membrane proteins but assume that binding is specific to proteins carrying the polyhistidine tag. Here, we find using chelator lipids and chelator beads that both native and recombinant Drp1 directly bind Ni2+ ions. Metal binding, therefore, represents a potential strategy to deplete or purify Drp1 from native tissue lysates. Importantly, high concentrations of the metal in solution inhibit GTP hydrolysis and renders Drp1 inactive in membrane fission. Together, our results emphasize a metal-binding propensity, which could significantly impact Drp1 functions.

Keywords: Drp1; GTPase activity; Membrane fission; Protein-lipid interactions; Transition metal binding.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Chelating Agents / metabolism
  • Dynamins / genetics
  • Dynamins / metabolism
  • Lipids
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Mitochondrial Dynamics* / physiology
  • Mitochondrial Proteins* / genetics
  • Mitochondrial Proteins* / metabolism


  • Chelating Agents
  • Lipids
  • Mitochondrial Proteins
  • Dynamins