Preprint Article Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Ataxin-2 Binds Alpha-Actinin-1

Version 1 : Received: 30 November 2019 / Approved: 30 November 2019 / Online: 30 November 2019 (14:47:30 CET)

How to cite: Eich, F.; Nonis, D.F.; Sen, N.; Nowock, J.; Auburger, G. Ataxin-2 Binds Alpha-Actinin-1. Preprints 2019, 2019110399. Eich, F.; Nonis, D.F.; Sen, N.; Nowock, J.; Auburger, G. Ataxin-2 Binds Alpha-Actinin-1. Preprints 2019, 2019110399.


Ataxin-2 (human gene symbol ATXN2, protein ATXN2) is the disease protein of Spinocerebellar Ataxia type 2 (SCA2). The large expansions of a polyglutamine (polyQ) stretch above a threshold of ~33 glutamines cause the multi-system nervous atrophy SCA2, while intermediate expansions of 29-32 glutamines contribute to the risk of the motor neuron diseases Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) and Fronto-Temporal Lobar Dementia (FTLD). To elucidate the cellular function of ATXN2, we further characterized its direct interaction with alpha-Actinin-1 (symbol ACTN1), which had been observed in high-throughput yeast-two-hybrid surveys. An endogenous complex of ATXN2 and ACTN1 proteins was detected by co-immunoprecipitation. In vitro GST-tag pull-down experiments showed that the Calponin-Homology-domain at the N-terminus of ACTN1 binds to the N-terminus of ATXN2. Although an impact of the polyQ expansion on the interaction was not evident in pull-down experiments, a recent characterization of aged Atxn2-CAG100-KnockIn mice provides evidence. Both proteins associated in the cytosol and at the plasma membrane, as determined by sedimentation experiments in mouse brain, and by immunofluorescence microscopy of a transfected monkey cell line and of rat primary hippocampal neurons. In view of the roles of ACTN1 for spine plasticity and postsynaptic receptor control via reassembly of cortical actin, our data help to explain the impaired dendrite maintenance in SCA2.


olivo-ponto-cerebellar atrophy (OPCA); Purkinje cells; Calcium/calmodulin dependent protein kinase II (CAMK2); Plastin (Fimbrin); Hirano bodies; Huntington’s disease


Biology and Life Sciences, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

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