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J Biol Chem. 1992 Oct 15;267(29):20774-81.

Regulation of iron uptake in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The ferrireductase and Fe(II) transporter are regulated independently.

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  • 1Department of Pathology, University of Utah College of Medicine, Salt Lake City 84132.


Iron is required for the growth of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. High concentrations of iron, however, are toxic, forcing this yeast to tightly regulate its concentration of intracellular free iron. We demonstrate that S. cerevisiae accumulates iron through the combined action of a plasma membrane ferrireductase and an Fe(II) transporter. This transporter is highly selective for Fe(II). Several other transition metals did not inhibit iron uptake when these metals were present at a concentration 100-fold higher than the Km (0.15 microM) for iron transport. Pt(II) inhibited ferrireductase activity but not the ability of cells to transport iron that was chemically reduced to Fe(II). Incubation of cells in a synthetic iron-limited media resulted in the induction of both ferrireductase and Fe(II) transporter activities. In complex media, Fe(II) transport activity was regulated in response to media iron concentration, while the activity of the ferrireductase was not. When stationary phase cells were inoculated into fresh media, ferrireductase activity increased independent of the iron content of the media; in contrast, transporter activity varied inversely with iron levels. These results demonstrate that the ferrireductase and Fe(II) transporter are separately regulated and that iron accumulation may be limited by changes in either activity.

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