A charged multivesicular body protein (CHMP4B) is required for lens growth and differentiation

Yuefang Zhou, Thomas M. Bennett, Alan Shiels

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


Charged multivesicular body protein 4B (CHMP4B) functions as a core component of the endosome sorting complex required for transport-III (ESCRT-III) machinery that facilitates diverse membrane remodeling and scission processes in eukaryotes. Mutations in the human CHMP4B gene underlie rare, inherited forms of early-onset lens opacities or cataract. Here we have characterized the lens phenotypes of mutant (knock-in) mice harboring a human cataract-associated mutation (p.D129V) in CHMP4B (Chmp4b-mutant) and conditional knockdown mice deficient in lens CHMP4B (Chmp4b-CKD). In situ hybridization localized Chmp4b transcripts to lens epithelial cells and elongating fiber cells at the lens equator. Heterozygous Chmp4b-mutant (D/V) mice were viable and fertile with lenses grossly similar to those of wild-type. However, homozygous Chmp4b-mutant (V/V) mice died by embryonic day 15.5 (E15.5) with grossly abnormal eye and brain histology. Chmp4b-CKD mice displayed variable degrees of lens dysmorphology including lens ablation. Immuno-localization of aquaporin-0 (AQP0) revealed lens fiber cell degeneration in homozygous Chmp4b-mutant (V/V) mouse embryos and in embryonic and postnatal Chmp4b-CKD mice. DNA fragmentation (TUNEL) analysis revealed global cell death in homozygous Chmp4b-mutant (V/V) embryos, whereas, cell death was confined to the lens of Chmp4b-CKD mice. Immuno-localization of the monocyte/macrophage marker macrosialin (CD68) suggested that severe lens degeneration in Chmp4b-CKD mice resulted in an ocular immune cell response. Collectively, these mouse data suggest that (1) heterozygous, germ-line mutations in Chmp4b may not manifest as cataract, (2) homozygous, germ-line mutations in Chmp4b are embryonic lethal, and (3) conditional loss of Chmp4b results in arrest of lens growth and differentiation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)16-27
Number of pages12
StatePublished - Sep 1 2019


  • Cataract
  • Chmp4b-knockdown
  • Chmp4b-mutant
  • Mouse
  • lens


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