The SUCLA2 gene provides instructions for making one part (a beta subunit) of an enzyme called succinate-CoA ligase. The body makes two slightly different versions of this enzyme: ADP-forming succinate-CoA ligase (A-SUCL) and GDP-forming succinate-CoA ligase (G-SUCL). Only A-SUCL contains the beta subunit produced from the SUCLA2 gene. This version of the enzyme is most active in tissues that require a large amount of energy, such as those of the brain and muscles.
Succinate-CoA ligase plays a critical role in mitochondria, which are structures inside cells that convert the energy from food into a form that cells can use. Within mitochondria, this enzyme is involved in a series of chemical reactions known as the citric acid cycle or Krebs cycle. These reactions allow cells to use oxygen and generate energy.
Mitochondria each contain a small amount of DNA, known as mitochondrial DNA or mtDNA. Studies suggest that succinate-CoA ligase interacts with another enzyme, nucleoside diphosphate kinase, to produce and maintain the building blocks of mitochondrial DNA. Having an adequate amount of mitochondrial DNA is essential for normal energy production within cells.
Health Conditions Related to Genetic Changes
Succinate-CoA ligase deficiency
At least four mutations in the SUCLA2 gene have been identified in people with succinate-CoA ligase deficiency. Each of these mutations alters the structure of A-SUCL, reducing the enzyme's activity. However, SUCLA2 gene mutations do not affect the other version of succinate-CoA ligase, G-SUCL. Studies suggest that the activity of G-SUCL may be able to compensate for a loss of A-SUCL in some tissues.
A shortage (deficiency) of A-SUCL leads to problems with the production and maintenance of mitochondrial DNA in the brain, muscles, and other tissues that require a large amount of energy. A reduction in the amount of mitochondrial DNA (known as mitochondrial DNA depletion) impairs mitochondrial function and the production of energy within cells. These problems lead to weak muscle tone (hypotonia), delayed development, and the other characteristic features of succinate-CoA ligase deficiency.More About This Health Condition
MedlinePlus Genetics provides information about Leigh syndromeMore About This Health Condition
Other Names for This Gene
- ATP-specific succinyl-CoA synthetase, beta subunit
- renal carcinoma antigen NY-REN-39
- succinate-CoA ligase beta subunit
- succinate-CoA ligase, ADP-forming, beta subunit
Additional Information & Resources
Tests Listed in the Genetic Testing Registry
Scientific Articles on PubMed
Catalog of Genes and Diseases from OMIM
- Carrozzo R, Dionisi-Vici C, Steuerwald U, Lucioli S, Deodato F, Di Giandomenico S, Bertini E, Franke B, Kluijtmans LA, Meschini MC, Rizzo C, Piemonte F, Rodenburg R, Santer R, Santorelli FM, van Rooij A, Vermunt-de Koning D, Morava E, Wevers RA. SUCLA2 mutations are associated with mild methylmalonic aciduria, Leigh-like encephalomyopathy, dystonia and deafness. Brain. 2007 Mar;130(Pt 3):862-74. doi: 10.1093/brain/awl389. Epub 2007 Feb 14. Citation on PubMed
- Chinnery PF. Mutations in SUCLA2: a tandem ride back to the Krebs cycle. Brain. 2007 Mar;130(Pt 3):606-9. doi: 10.1093/brain/awm023. No abstract available. Citation on PubMed
- Elpeleg O, Miller C, Hershkovitz E, Bitner-Glindzicz M, Bondi-Rubinstein G, Rahman S, Pagnamenta A, Eshhar S, Saada A. Deficiency of the ADP-forming succinyl-CoA synthase activity is associated with encephalomyopathy and mitochondrial DNA depletion. Am J Hum Genet. 2005 Jun;76(6):1081-6. doi: 10.1086/430843. Epub 2005 Apr 22. Citation on PubMed or Free article on PubMed Central
- Kowluru A, Tannous M, Chen HQ. Localization and characterization of the mitochondrial isoform of the nucleoside diphosphate kinase in the pancreatic beta cell: evidence for its complexation with mitochondrial succinyl-CoA synthetase. Arch Biochem Biophys. 2002 Feb 15;398(2):160-9. doi: 10.1006/abbi.2001.2710. Citation on PubMed
- Lambeth DO, Tews KN, Adkins S, Frohlich D, Milavetz BI. Expression of two succinyl-CoA synthetases with different nucleotide specificities in mammalian tissues. J Biol Chem. 2004 Aug 27;279(35):36621-4. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M406884200. Epub 2004 Jul 2. Citation on PubMed
- Ostergaard E, Hansen FJ, Sorensen N, Duno M, Vissing J, Larsen PL, Faeroe O, Thorgrimsson S, Wibrand F, Christensen E, Schwartz M. Mitochondrial encephalomyopathy with elevated methylmalonic acid is caused by SUCLA2 mutations. Brain. 2007 Mar;130(Pt 3):853-61. doi: 10.1093/brain/awl383. Epub 2007 Feb 7. Citation on PubMed
- Ostergaard E. Disorders caused by deficiency of succinate-CoA ligase. J Inherit Metab Dis. 2008 Apr;31(2):226-9. doi: 10.1007/s10545-008-0828-7. Epub 2008 Apr 4. Citation on PubMed