Loss of the mitochondrial protein Abcb10 results in altered arginine metabolism in MEL and K562 cells and nutrient stress signaling through ATF4


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Marisa Miljkovic, Alexandra Seguin, Xuan Jia, James E Cox, Jonathan Leon Catrow, Hector Bergonia, John D Phillips, W Zac Stephens, Diane M Ward

J Biol Chem 2023 Jun 1;104877. PMDI: 37269954


Abcb10 is a mitochondrial membrane protein involved in hemoglobinization of red cells. Abcb10 topology and ATPase domain localization suggest it exports a substrate, likely biliverdin, out of mitochondria that is necessary for hemoglobinization. In this study we generated Abcb10 deletion cell lines in both mouse murine erythroleukemia (MEL) and human erythroid precursor human myelogenous leukemia (K562) cells to better understand the consequences of Abcb10 loss. Loss of Abcb10 resulted in an inability to hemoglobinize upon differentiation in both K562 and MEL cells with reduced heme and intermediate porphyrins and decreased levels of aminolevulinic acid synthase 2 activity. Metabolomic and transcriptional analyses revealed that Abcb10 loss gave rise to decreased cellular arginine levels, increased transcripts for cationic and neutral amino acid transporters with reduced levels of the citrulline to arginine converting enzymes argininosuccinate synthetase and argininosuccinate lyase. The reduced arginine levels in Abcb10 null cells gave rise to decreased proliferative capacity. Arginine supplementation improved both Abcb10 null proliferation and hemoglobinization upon differentiation. Abcb10 null cells showed increased phosphorylation of Eukaryotic Translation Initiation Factor 2 Subunit Alpha (eIF2A), increased expression of nutrient sensing transcription factor ATF4 and downstream targets DNA damage inducible transcript 3 (Chop), ChaC glutathione specific gamma-glutamylcyclotransferase 1 (Chac1) and arginyl-tRNA synthetase 1 (Rars). These results suggest that when the Abcb10 substrate is trapped in the mitochondria, the nutrient sensing machinery is turned on remodeling transcription to block protein synthesis necessary for proliferation and hemoglobin biosynthesis in erythroid models.

This work was supported by a University of Utah CIHD P&F award DK110858 to DMW and the Mutation Generation Detection, Metabolomics and Iron and Heme Cores U54DK110858 at the University of Utah School of Medicine. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/37269954/

Publication: 2023-06-27