Mitofusin 2 regulates neutrophil adhesive migration and the actin cytoskeleton
Hsu, Alan Y.
Seleem, Mohamed N.
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Neutrophils rely on glycolysis for energy production. How mitochondria regulate neutrophil function is not fully understood. Here, we report that mitochondrial outer membrane protein Mitofusin 2 (MFN2) regulates neutrophilhomeostasis andchemotaxis in vivo. Mfn2-deficientneutrophils are released from the hematopoietic tissue, trapped in the vasculature in zebrafish embryos, and not capable of chemotaxis. Consistent with this, human neutrophil-like cells that are deficient for MFN2 fail to arrest on activated endothelium under sheer stress or perform chemotaxis on 2D surfaces. Deletion of MFN2 results in a significant reduction of neutrophil infiltration to the inflamed peritoneal cavity in mice. Mechanistically, MFN2-deficient neutrophil-like cells display disrupted mitochondria-ER interaction, heightened intracellular Ca2+ levels and elevated Rac activation after chemokine stimulation. Restoring a mitochondria-ER tether rescues the abnormal Ca2+ levels, Rac hyperactivation and chemotaxis defect resulting from MFN2 depletion. Finally, inhibition of Rac activation restores chemotaxis in MFN2-deficient neutrophils. Taken together, we have identified that MFN2 regulates neutrophil migration via maintaining the mitochondria-ER interaction to suppress Rac activation, and uncovered a previously unrecognized role of MFN2 in regulating cell migration and the actin cytoskeleton. This article has an associated First Person interview with the first authors of the paper.