Yeast dihydroxybutanone phosphate synthase, an enzyme of the riboflavin biosynthetic pathway, has a second unrelated function in expression of mitochondrial respiration

Can Jin, Antoni Barrientos, Alexander Tzagoloff

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aE280/U1 is a pet mutant of Saccharomyces cerevisiae partially deficient in cytochromes a, a3, and cytochrome b. The ability of this mutant to respire is restored by RIB3, a gene previously shown to code for 3,4-dihydroxy-2-butanone-4-phosphate synthase (DHBP synthase), an enzyme of the riboflavin biosynthetic pathway. The sequences of RIB3 from wild type and aE280/U1 indicated a single base change resulting in an A137T substitution. The alanine 137 is a conserved residue located in a cavity on the surface of the protein distant from the active site and from the subunit interaction domain involved in homodimer formation. The respiratory defect elicited by this mutation cannot be explained by a flavin insufficiency based on the following evidence: 1) growth of the aE280/U1 on respiratory substrates is not rescued by exogenous riboflavin; 2) the levels of flavin nucleotides are not significantly different in the mutant and wild type. We proposed that in addition to its known function in riboflavin synthesis, RIB3 also functions in expression of mitochondrial respiration. Restoration by riboflavin of growth of a rib3 deletion mutant on glucose but not glycerol/ethanol also supported this conclusion. An antibody against the N-terminal half of DHBP synthase was used to study its subcellular distribution. Most of the protein was localized in the cytosolic fraction, but a small fraction was detected in the mitochondrial intermembrane space.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14698-14703
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number17
StatePublished - Apr 25 2003


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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