Mouse models of NADK2 deficiency analyzed for metabolic and gene expression changes to elucidate pathophysiology.

Document Type


Publication Date


Publication Title

Human molecular genetics



JAX Source

Hum Mol Genet 2022 Jul 7:ddac141 [Online ahead of print]








NADK2 encodes the mitochondrial form of NAD Kinase, which phosphorylates nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide (NAD). Rare recessive mutations in human NADK2 are associated with a syndromic neurological mitochondrial disease that includes metabolic changes such as hyperlysinemia and 2,4 dienoyl CoA reductase (DECR) deficiency. However, the full pathophysiology resulting from NADK2 deficiency is not known. Here we describe two chemically-induced mouse mutations in Nadk2, S326L and S330P, which cause a severe neuromuscular disease and shorten lifespan. The S330P allele was characterized in detail and shown to have marked denervation of neuromuscular junctions by 5 weeks of age and muscle atrophy by 11 weeks of age. Cerebellar Purkinje cells also showed progressive degeneration in this model. Transcriptome profiling on brain and muscle was performed at early and late disease stages. In addition, metabolomic profiling was performed on brain, muscle, liver, and spinal cord at the same ages, and plasma at 5 weeks. Combined transcriptomic and metabolomic analyses identified hyperlysinemia, DECR deficiency, and generalized metabolic dysfunction in Nadk2 mutant mice, indicating relevance to the human disease. We compared findings from the Nadk model to equivalent RNAseq and metabolomic datasets from a mouse model of infantile neuroaxonal dystrophy, caused by recessive mutations in Pla2g6. This enabled us to identify disrupted biological processes that are common between these mouse models of neurological disease, as well as those processes that are gene-specific. These findings improve our understanding of the pathophysiology of neuromuscular diseases, and describe mouse models that will be useful for future preclinical studies.