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Mol Genet Genomics. 2001 Aug;265(6):1120-8.

Genetic selection in Saccharomyces of mutant mammalian adenylyl cyclases with elevated basal activities.

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  • 1Cadus Pharmaceutical Corporation, Tarrytown, NY 10591, USA.


We show that co-expression of rat Galphas together with type I, II, IV, or VI mammalian adenylyl cyclase (AC) can suppress the growth defect of cyr1 strains of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, which lack a functional endogenous AC. Complemention of cvr1 is not observed in the absence of Galphas, indicating that the mammalian ACs retain their normal regulatory behavior in yeast. Selection for Galphas-independent growth of (cyr1 strains expressing type IV AC yielded several ACIV mutants with enhanced basal activity, each of which had a single amino acid substitution in the conserved C1a or C2a region of the protein. Expression of two of the mutant ACs in HEK293 cells resulted in increased levels of cAMP and elevated adenylyl cyclase activity. Further selection for reverting mutations in one of these constitutively active AC mutants yielded three independent intragenic suppressor mutations. The distribution of the activating and suppressor mutations throughout both C1a and C2a is consistent with a model in which the enhanced basal activity results from an increase in the affinity between C1a and C2a. These results demonstrate the utility of Saccharomyces as a tool for the identification of informative mutant forms of mammalian ACs.

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