An Essential Role for COPI in mRNA Localization to Mitochondria and Mitochondrial Function

Dmitry Zabezhinsky, Boris Slobodin, Doron Rapaport, Jeffrey Gerst

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nuclear-encoded mRNAs encoding mitochondrial proteins (mMPs) can localize directly to the mitochondrial surface, yet how mMPs target mitochondria and whether RNA targeting contributes to protein import into mitochondria and cellular metabolism are unknown. Here, we show that the COPI vesicle coat complex is necessary for mMP localization to mitochondria and mitochondrial function. COPI inactivation leads to reduced mMP binding to COPI itself, resulting in the dissociation of mMPs from mitochondria, a reduction in mitochondrial membrane potential, a decrease in protein import in vivo and in vitro, and severe deficiencies in mitochondrial respiration. Using a model mMP (OXA1), we observed that COPI inactivation (ormutation of the potential COPI-interaction site) led to altered mRNA localization and impaired cellular respiration. Overall, COPI-mediated mMP targeting is critical for mitochondrial protein import and function, and transcript delivery to the mitochondria or endoplasmic reticulum is regulated by cis-acting RNA sequences and trans-acting proteins.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)540-549
Number of pages10
JournalCell Reports
Issue number3
StatePublished - 19 Apr 2016

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'An Essential Role for COPI in mRNA Localization to Mitochondria and Mitochondrial Function'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this