ALS mutant FUS proteins are recruited into stress granules in induced pluripotent stem cell-derived motoneurons


Patient-derived induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) provide an opportunity to study human diseases mainly in those cases for which no suitable model systems are available. Here, we have taken advantage of in vitro iPSCs derived from patients affected by amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) and carrying mutations in the RNA-binding protein FUS to study the cellular behavior of the mutant proteins in the appropriate genetic background. Moreover, the ability to differentiate iPSCs into spinal cord neural cells provides an in vitro model mimicking the physiological conditions. iPSCs were derived from FUS(R514S) and FUS(R521C) patient fibroblasts, whereas in the case of the severe FUS(P525L) mutation, in which fibroblasts were not available, a heterozygous and a homozygous iPSC line were raised by TALEN-directed mutagenesis. We show that aberrant localization and recruitment of FUS into stress granules (SGs) is a prerogative of the FUS mutant proteins and occurs only upon induction of stress in both undifferentiated iPSCs and spinal cord neural cells. Moreover, we show that the incorporation into SGs is proportional to the amount of cytoplasmic FUS, strongly correlating with the cytoplasmic delocalization phenotype of the different mutants. Therefore, the available iPSCs represent a very powerful system for understanding the correlation between FUS mutations, the molecular mechanisms of SG formation and ALS ethiopathogenesis. © 2015. Published by The Company of Biologists Ltd.

Authors Lenzi J, De Santis R, de Turris V, Morlando M, Laneve P, Calvo A, Caliendo V, Chiò A, Rosa A, Bozzoni I
Journal Disease models & mechanisms
Publication Date 2015 Jul 1;8(7):755-66
PubMed 26035390
PubMed Central PMC4486861
DOI 10.1242/dmm.020099

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