Regulated protein degradation in mitochondria
- Cite this article as:
- Langer, T. & Neupert, W. Experientia (1996) 52: 1069. doi:10.1007/BF01952104
Various adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-dependent proteases were identified within mitochondria which mediate selective mitochondrial protein degradation and fulfill crucial functions in mitochondrial biogenesis. The matrix-localized PIM1 protease, a homologue of theEscherichia coli Lon protease, is required for respiration and maintenance of mitochondrial genome integrity. Degradation of non-native polypeptides by PIM1 protease depends on the chaperone activity of the mitochondrial Hsp70 system, posing intriguing questions about the relation between the proteolytic system and the folding machinery in mitochondria. The mitochondrial inner membrane harbors two ATP-dependent metallopeptidases, them- and thei-AAA protease, which expose their catalytic sites to opposite membrane surfaces and cooperate in the degradation of inner membrane proteins. In addition to its proteolytic activity, them-AAA protease has chaperone-like activity during the assembly of respiratory and ATP-synthase complexes. It constitutes a quality control system in the inner membrane for membrane-embedded protein complexes.