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Reference: Dagsgaard C, et al. (2001) Effects of anoxia and the mitochondrion on expression of aerobic nuclear COX genes in yeast: evidence for a signaling pathway from the mitochondrial genome to the nucleus. J Biol Chem 276(10):7593-601

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Abstract

Eucaryotic cells contain at least two general classes of oxygen-regulated nuclear genes: aerobic genes and hypoxic genes. Hypoxic genes are induced upon exposure to anoxia while aerobic genes are down-regulated. Recently, it has been reported that induction of some hypoxic nuclear genes in mammals and yeast requires mitochondrial respiration and that cytochrome-c oxidase functions as an oxygen sensor during this process. In this study, we have examined the role of the mitochondrion and cytochrome-c oxidase in the expression of yeast aerobic nuclear COX genes. We have found that the down-regulation of these genes in anoxic cells is reflected in reduced levels of their subunit polypeptides and that cytochrome-c oxidase subunits I, II, III, Vb, VI, VII, and VIIa are present in promitochondria from anoxic cells. By using nuclear cox mutants and mitochondrial rho(0) and mit(-) mutants, we have found that neither respiration nor cytochrome-c oxidase is required for the down-regulation of these genes in cells exposed to anoxia but that a mitochondrial genome is required for their full expression under both normoxic and anoxic conditions. This requirement for a mitochondrial genome is unrelated to the presence or absence of a functional holocytochrome-c oxidase. We have also found that the down-regulation of these genes in cells exposed to anoxia and the down-regulation that results from the absence of a mitochondrial genome are independent of one another. These findings indicate that the mitochondrial genome, acting independently of respiration and oxidative phosphorylation, affects the expression of the aerobic nuclear COX genes and suggest the existence of a signaling pathway from the mitochondrial genome to the nucleus.

Reference Type
Journal Article | Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
Authors
Dagsgaard C, Taylor LE, O'Brien KM, Poyton RO
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