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Hum Mol Genet. 2008 Jun 15;17(12):1728-37. doi: 10.1093/hmg/ddn063. Epub 2008 Mar 12.

Biological effects of CCS in the absence of SOD1 enzyme activation: implications for disease in a mouse model for ALS.

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Division of Toxicological Sciences, Department of Environmental Health Sciences, Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA.


The CCS copper chaperone is critical for maturation of Cu, Zn-superoxide dismutase (SOD1) through insertion of the copper co-factor and oxidization of an intra-subunit disulfide. The disulfide helps stabilize the SOD1 polypeptide, which can be particularly important in cases of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) linked to misfolding of mutant SOD1. Surprisingly, however, over-expressed CCS was recently shown to greatly accelerate disease in a G93A SOD1 mouse model for ALS. Herein we show that disease in these G93A/CCS mice correlates with incomplete oxidation of the SOD1 disulfide. In the brain and spinal cord, CCS over-expression failed to enhance oxidation of the G93A SOD1 disulfide and if anything, effected some accumulation of disulfide-reduced SOD1. This effect was mirrored in culture with a C244,246S mutant of CCS that has the capacity to interact with SOD1 but can neither insert copper nor oxidize the disulfide. In spite of disulfide effects, there was no evidence for increased SOD1 aggregation. If anything, CCS over-expression prevented SOD1 misfolding in culture as monitored by detergent insolubility. This protection against SOD1 misfolding does not require SOD1 enzyme activation as the same effect was obtained with the C244,246S allele of CCS. In the G93A SOD1 mouse, CCS over-expression was likewise associated with a lack of obvious SOD1 misfolding marked by detergent insolubility. CCS over-expression accelerates SOD1-linked disease without the hallmarks of misfolding and aggregation seen in other mutant SOD1 models. These studies are the first to indicate biological effects of CCS in the absence of SOD1 enzymatic activation.

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