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Reference: Folley LS and Fox TD (1994) Reduced dosage of genes encoding ribosomal protein S18 suppresses a mitochondrial initiation codon mutation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Genetics 137(2):369-79

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Abstract

A yeast mitochondrial translation initiation codon mutation affecting the gene for cytochrome oxidase subunit III (COX3) was partially suppressed by a spontaneous nuclear mutation. The suppressor mutation also caused cold-sensitive fermentative growth on glucose medium. Suppression and cold sensitivity resulted from inactivation of the gene product of RPS18A, one of two unlinked genes that code the essential cytoplasmic small subunit ribosomal protein termed S18 in yeast. The two S18 genes differ only by 21 silent substitutions in their exons; both are interrupted by a single intron after the 15th codon. Yeast S18 is homologous to the human S11 (70% identical) and the Escherichia coli S17 (35% identical) ribosomal proteins. This highly conserved family of ribosomal proteins has been implicated in maintenance of translational accuracy and is essential for assembly of the small ribosomal subunit. Characterization of the original rps18a-1 missense mutant and rps18a delta and rps18b delta null mutants revealed that levels of suppression, cold sensitivity and paromomycin sensitivity all varied directly with a limitation of small ribosomal subunits. The rps18a-1 mutant was most affected, followed by rps18a delta then rps18b delta. Mitochondrial mutations that decreased COX3 expression without altering the initiation codon were not suppressed. This allele specificity implicates mitochondrial translation in the mechanism of suppression. We could not detect an epitope-tagged variant of S18 in mitochondria. Thus, it appears that suppression of the mitochondrial translation initiation defect is caused indirectly by reduced levels of cytoplasmic small ribosomal subunits, leading to changes in either cytoplasmic translational accuracy or the relative levels of cytoplasmic translation products.

Reference Type
Journal Article | Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't | Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S. | Comparative Study
Authors
Folley LS, Fox TD
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