Mitochondrial dysfunction occurs early in late-onset sporadic Parkinson's disease (PD), but the mitochondrial protein network mediating PD pathogenesis is largely unknown. Mutations in the mitochondrial serine-threonine kinase PINK1 have recently been shown to cause the early-onset autosomal recessive PARK6 variant of PD. We have now tested a candidate interactor protein of PINK1, the mitochondrial translation initiation factor 3 (MTIF3) for involvement in PD pathogenesis. In two independent case-control collectives, the c.798C>T polymorphism of the MTIF3 gene showed allelic association with PD, with a maximal significance of p = 0.0073. An altered function of variant MTIF3 may affect the availability of mitochondrial encoded proteins, lead to oxidative stress and create vulnerability for PD.
- Parkinson's disease