Mitochondria are found in almost all eukaryotic cells and play a role in processes such as ATP production, calcium homeostasis, lipid synthesis and apoptosis signaling. Mitochondria are organized as a network that undergoes constant events of fission and fusion, processes which are critical for their cellular function. The mitochondrial network is sensitive to changes in physiological conditions, as reflected in morphological rearrangements such as hyperfusion in response to starvation and fragmentation in response to oxidative stress. Myosins play a role in key processes such as muscle contraction, cell division, membrane trafficking, endocytosis, tension sensing and dynamic tethers. There are 35 classes of myosins across all eukaryotes and specifically 12 classes in humans. Myosin 19 was recently discovered as novel mitochondria localized myosin in vertebrates. The motor domain of human myosin 19 shares ˜35% identity with other motor domains of human myosins, whereas the tail domain has no obvious homology to other human myosins. Overexpressed myosin 19 tail localizes to mitochondria, indicating that the mitochondrial targeting signal is located within residues 824-970. Overexpression of myosin 19 almost doubled mitochondrial motility while overexpression of the dominant negative tail reduced mitochondrial run lengths, indicating that myosin 19 can modulate mitochondrial motility. Myosin 19 also affected mitochondrial shape, causing mitochondria to assume a tadpole shape with a wider leading edge. The mode by which myosin 19 interacts with the mitochondria is unknown. There is a need for peptides capable of targeting and/or delivering compounds to mitochondria in a cell. The innovation provides peptides derived from myosin 19 and compositions comprising same, as well as methods for targeting and/or delivering compounds to mitochondria in a cell.
- Highly specific sequence that targets only the mitochondria with extreme high efficiency and accuracy
- Diagnosing a mitochondria-associated disease or disorder