Diverse CMT2 neuropathies are linked to aberrant G3BP interactions in stress granules

Cell. 2023 Feb 16;186(4):803-820.e25. doi: 10.1016/j.cell.2022.12.046. Epub 2023 Feb 3.


Complex diseases often involve the interplay between genetic and environmental factors. Charcot-Marie-Tooth type 2 neuropathies (CMT2) are a group of genetically heterogeneous disorders, in which similar peripheral neuropathology is inexplicably caused by various mutated genes. Their possible molecular links remain elusive. Here, we found that upon environmental stress, many CMT2-causing mutant proteins adopt similar properties by entering stress granules (SGs), where they aberrantly interact with G3BP and integrate into SG pathways. For example, glycyl-tRNA synthetase (GlyRS) is translocated from the cytoplasm into SGs upon stress, where the mutant GlyRS perturbs the G3BP-centric SG network by aberrantly binding to G3BP. This disrupts SG-mediated stress responses, leading to increased stress vulnerability in motoneurons. Disrupting this aberrant interaction rescues SG abnormalities and alleviates motor deficits in CMT2D mice. These findings reveal a stress-dependent molecular link across diverse CMT2 mutants and provide a conceptual framework for understanding genetic heterogeneity in light of environmental stress.

Keywords: Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathies; G3BP; axon degeneration; environmental stress; genetic heterogeneity; motor neuron; neuromuscular junction; peripheral neuropathy; phase separation; stress granule.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease* / genetics
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease* / metabolism
  • Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease* / pathology
  • Cytoplasm
  • Mice
  • Motor Neurons
  • RNA Recognition Motif Proteins* / metabolism
  • Stress Granules*


  • G3bp1 protein, mouse
  • RNA Recognition Motif Proteins