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Mol Cell Biol. Nov 1997; 17(11): 6339–6347.
PMCID: PMC232485

A homolog of mammalian, voltage-gated calcium channels mediates yeast pheromone-stimulated Ca2+ uptake and exacerbates the cdc1(Ts) growth defect.


Previous studies attributed the yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) cdc1(Ts) growth defect to loss of an Mn2+-dependent function. In this report we show that cdc1(Ts) temperature-sensitive growth is also associated with an increase in cytosolic Ca2+. We identified two recessive suppressors of the cdc1(Ts) temperature-sensitive growth which block Ca2+ uptake and accumulation, suggesting that cytosolic Ca2+ exacerbates or is responsible for the cdc1(Ts) growth defect. One of the cdc1(Ts) suppressors is identical to a gene, MID1, recently implicated in mating pheromone-stimulated Ca2+ uptake. The gene (CCH1) corresponding to the second suppressor encodes a protein that bears significant sequence similarity to the pore-forming subunit (alpha1) of plasma membrane, voltage-gated Ca2+ channels from higher eukaryotes. Strains lacking Mid1 or Cch1 protein exhibit a defect in pheromone-induced Ca2+ uptake and consequently lose viability upon mating arrest. The mid1delta and cch1delta mutants also display reduced tolerance to monovalent cations such as Li+, suggesting a role for Ca2+ uptake in the calcineurin-dependent ion stress response. Finally, mid1delta cch1delta double mutants are, by both physiological and genetic criteria, identical to single mutants. These and other results suggest Mid1 and Cch1 are components of a yeast Ca2+ channel that may mediate Ca2+ uptake in response to mating pheromone, salt stress, and Mn2+ depletion.

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