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Neurol Genet. 2018 Oct 5;4(5):e276. doi: 10.1212/NXG.0000000000000276. eCollection 2018 Oct.

Early-onset Parkinson disease caused by a mutation in CHCHD2 and mitochondrial dysfunction.

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Centre for Medical Research (R.G.L., A.-M.J.S., M. Stentenbach, H.G., O.R., N.G.L., H.T., A.F.), University of Western Australia and the Harry Perkins Institute for Medical Research, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia; Department of Genetics (M. Sedghi), University of Isfahan, Isfahan; Functional Neurosurgery Research Center (M. Salari), Shohada Tajrish Neurosurgical Center of Excellence, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran; Kariminejad-Najmabadi Pathology and Genetics Center (A.K.), Tehran, Iran; School of Molecular Sciences (O.R., A.F.), The University of Western Australia, Crawley; Department of Diagnostic Genomics (N.G.L.), PathWest, QEII Medical Centre, Nedlands, Western Australia, Australia; and Division Biomedicine and Public Health (H.T.), School of Health and Education, University of Skovde, Sweden.



Our goal was to identify the gene(s) associated with an early-onset form of Parkinson disease (PD) and the molecular defects associated with this mutation.


We combined whole-exome sequencing and functional genomics to identify the genes associated with early-onset PD. We used fluorescence microscopy, cell, and mitochondrial biology measurements to identify the molecular defects resulting from the identified mutation.


Here, we report an association of a homozygous variant in CHCHD2, encoding coiled-coil-helix-coiled-coil-helix domain containing protein 2, a mitochondrial protein of unknown function, with an early-onset form of PD in a 26-year-old Caucasian woman. The CHCHD2 mutation in PD patient fibroblasts causes fragmentation of the mitochondrial reticular morphology and results in reduced oxidative phosphorylation at complex I and complex IV. Although patient cells could maintain a proton motive force, reactive oxygen species production was increased, which correlated with an increased metabolic rate.


Our findings implicate CHCHD2 in the pathogenesis of recessive early-onset PD, expanding the repertoire of mitochondrial proteins that play a direct role in this disease.

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