IKAP/Elp1 involvement in cytoskeleton regulation and implication for familial dysautonomia

David Cheishvili, Channa Maayan, Rachel Cohen-Kupiec, Sharon Lefler, Miguel Weil, Gil Ast, Aharon Razin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Deficiency in the IKAP/Elp1 protein leads to the recessive sensory autosomal congenital neuropathy which is called familial dysautonomia (FD). This protein was originally identified as a role player in transcriptional elongation being a subunit of the RNAPII transcriptional Elongator multi-protein complex. Subsequently, IKAP/Elp1 was shown to play various functions in the cytoplasm. Here, we describe experiments performed with IKAP/Elp1 downregulated cell lines and FD-derived cells and tissues. Immunostaining of the cytoskeleton component a-tubulin in IKAP/Elp1 downregulated cells revealed disorganization of the microtubules (MTs) that was reflected in aberrant cell shape and process formation. In contrast to a recent report on the decrease in a-tubulin acetylation in IKAP/Elp1 downregulated cells, we were unable to observe any effect of IKAP/Elp1 deficiency on a-tubulin acetylation in the FD cerebrum and in a variety of IKAP/Elp1 downregulated cell lines. To explore possible candidates involved in the observed aberrations in MTs, we focused on superior cervical ganglion-10 protein (SCG10), also called STMN2, which is known to be an MT destabilizing protein. We have found that SCG10 is upregulated in the IKAP/Elp1-deficient FD cerebrum, FD fibroblasts and in IKAP/Elp1 downregulated neuroblastoma cell line. To better understand the effect of IKAP/Elp1 deficiency on SCG10 expression, we investigated the possible involvement of RE-1-silencing transcription factor (REST), a known repressor of the SCG10 gene. Indeed, REST was downregulated in the IKAP/Elp1-deficient FD cerebrum and IKAP/Elp1 downregulated neuroblastoma cell line. These results could shed light on a possible link between IKAP/Elp1 deficiency and cytoskeleton destabilization.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberddr036
Pages (from-to)1585-1594
Number of pages10
JournalHuman Molecular Genetics
Issue number8
StatePublished - Apr 2011


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