PMP22 regulates cholesterol trafficking and ABCA1-mediated cholesterol efflux

Ye Zhou, Joshua R. Miles, Hagai Tavori, Min Lin, Habibeh Khoshbouei, David R. Borchelt, Hannah Bazick, Gary E. Landreth, Sooyeon Lee, Sergio Fazio, Lucia Notterpek

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    26 Scopus citations


    The absence of functional peripheral myelin protein 22 (PMP22) is associated with shortened lifespan in rodents and severe peripheral nerve myelin abnormalities in several species including humans. Schwann cells and nerves from PMP22 knock-out (KO) mice show deranged cholesterol distribution and aberrant lipid raft morphology, supporting an unrecognized role for PMP22 in cellular lipid metabolism. To examine the mechanisms underlying these abnormalities, we studied Schwann cells and nerves from male and female PMP22 KO mice. Whole-cell current-clamp recordings in cultured Schwann cells revealed increased membrane capacitance and decreased membrane resistance in the absence of PMP22, which was consistent with a reduction in membrane cholesterol. Nerves from PMP22-deficient mice contained abnormal lipid droplets, with both mRNA and protein levels of apolipoprotein E (apoE) and ATPbinding cassette transporter A1 (ABCA1) being highly upregulated. Despite the upregulation of ABCA1 and apoE, the absence of PMP22 resulted in reduced localization of the transporter to the cell membrane and diminished secretion of apoE. The absence of PMP22 also impaired ABCA1-mediated cholesterol efflux capacity. In nerves from ABCA1 KO mice, the expression of PMP22 was significantly elevated and the subcellular processing of the overproduced protein was aberrant. In wild-type samples, double immunolabeling identified overlapping distribution of PMP22 and ABCA1 at the Schwann cell plasma membrane and the two proteins were coimmunoprecipitated from Schwann cell and nerve lysates. Together, these results reveal a novel role for PMP22 in regulating lipid metabolism and cholesterol trafficking through functional interaction with the cholesterol efflux regulatory protein ABCA1.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)5404-5418
    Number of pages15
    JournalJournal of Neuroscience
    Issue number27
    StatePublished - Jul 3 2019


    • ATP-binding cassette transporter 1
    • Cholesterol efflux
    • Hereditary neuropathy
    • Peripheral myelin protein 22
    • Schwann cell
    • apoE

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Neuroscience(all)


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