Mechanistic insights into the roles of the UFM1 E3 ligase complex in ufmylation and ribosome-associated protein quality control

Ubiquitin-fold modifier 1 (UFM1) is a ubiquitin-like protein covalently conjugated with intracellular proteins through ufmylation, similar to ubiquitylation. Ufmylation is involved in processes such as endoplasmic reticulum (ER)-associated protein degradation, ribosome-associated protein quality control (RQC) at the ER (ER-RQC), and ER-phagy. However, it remains unclear how ufmylation regulates such distinct ER-related functions. Here, we provide insights into the mechanism of the UFM1 E3 complex in not only ufmylation but also ER-RQC. The E3 complex consisting of UFL1 and UFBP1 interacted with UFC1, UFM1 E2, and, subsequently, CDK5RAP3, an adaptor for ufmylation of ribosomal subunit RPL26. Upon disome formation, the E3 complex associated with ufmylated RPL26 on the 60S subunit through the UFM1-interacting region of UFBP1. Loss of E3 components or disruption of the interaction between UFBP1 and ufmylated RPL26 attenuated ER-RQC. These results provide insights into not only the molecular basis of the ufmylation but also its role in proteostasis.


Authors: Ishimura R, Ito S, Mao G,  Komatsu-Hirota S, Inada T, Noda NN, Komatsu M

Journal: SCIENCE ADVANCES. 2023;9(33):3635.