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Mol Cell Biol. 1989 Oct;9(10):4161-9.

The yeast CBP1 gene produces two differentially regulated transcripts by alternative 3'-end formation.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, University of Arizona, Tucson 85721.


CBP1 is a yeast nuclear gene encoding a mitochondrial protein that stabilizes the 5' end of cytochrome b (cob) pre-mRNA. Cytochrome b is the only mitochondrially synthesized component of the respiratory chain complex III. Since the nuclearly encoded subunits of this complex are regulated at the transcriptional level by catabolite repression, we hypothesized that CBP1 might be similarly regulated. To test the idea that transcriptional regulation of CBP1 could coordinate an increase in cytochrome b mRNA stability with an increase in nuclearly encoded complex III subunit production, we characterized the change in abundance of CBP1 mRNA during derepression on a nonfermentable carbon source. Poly(A)+ RNA from derepressed yeast cells was examined by Northern (RNA) analyses with cRNA probes from CBP1. Both 2.2- and 1.3-kilobase (kb) transcripts were detected. The 1.3-kb mRNA lacked approximately 900 nucleotides of the 3' end of the 2.2-kb mRNA, which encodes the carboxyl-terminal 250 amino acid residues of the CBP1 coding sequence. Northern analyses of RNA isolated from deletion-insertion mutants of CBP1 and from strains that overexpress CBP1 mRNA demonstrated that both mRNAs were transcribed from the CBP1 gene. Furthermore, we demonstrated that the levels of the two CBP1 mRNAs were reciprocally regulated by the carbon source in the growth medium. This is the first description of a yeast gene from which two transcripts that can encode proteins with distinctly different coding properties are generated by alternative 3'-end formation.

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