Lethality of mice bearing a knockout of the Ngly1-gene is partially rescued by the additional deletion of the Engase gene
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The cytoplasmic peptide:N-glycanase (Ngly1 in mammals) is a de-N-glycosylating enzyme that is highly conserved among eukaryotes. It was recently reported that subjects harboring mutations in the NGLY1 gene exhibited severe systemic symptoms (NGLY1-deficiency). While the enzyme obviously has a critical role in mammals, its precise function remains unclear. In this study, we analyzed Ngly1-deficient mice and found that they are embryonic lethal in C57BL/6 background. Surprisingly, the additional deletion of the gene encoding endo-β-N-acetylglucosaminidase (Engase), which is another de-N-glycosylating enzyme but leaves a single GlcNAc at glycosylated Asn residues, resulted in the partial rescue of the lethality of the Ngly1-deficient mice. Additionally, we also found that a change in the genetic background of C57BL/6 mice, produced by crossing the mice with an outbred mouse strain (ICR) could partially rescue the embryonic lethality of Ngly1-deficient mice. Viable Ngly1-deficient mice in a C57BL/6 and ICR mixed background, however, showed a very severe phenotype reminiscent of the symptoms of NGLY1-deficiency subjects. Again, many of those defects were strongly suppressed by the additional deletion of Engase in the C57BL/6 and ICR mixed background. The defects observed in Ngly1/Engase-deficient mice (C57BL/6 background) and Ngly1-deficient mice (C57BL/6 and ICR mixed background) closely resembled some of the symptoms of patients with an NGLY1-deficiency. These observations strongly suggest that the Ngly1- or Ngly1/Engase-deficient mice could serve as a valuable animal model for studies related to the pathogenesis of the NGLY1-deficiency, and that cytoplasmic ENGase represents one of the potential therapeutic targets for this genetic disorder.
- PLOS Genetics
PLOS Genetics 13(4), 2017-04-20
Public Library of Science (PLoS)