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Eur J Biochem. 1999 Apr;261(1):163-70.

In Saccharomyces cerevisae, feedback inhibition of homocitrate synthase isoenzymes by lysine modulates the activation of LYS gene expression by Lys14p.

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1
Laboratoire de Microbiologie, Faculté des Sciences, Université Libre de Bruxelles, Institut de Recherches Microbiologiques Jean-Marie Wiame, Brussels, Belgium.

Abstract

Expression of the structural genes for lysine biosynthesis responds to an induction mechanism mediated by the transcriptional activator Lys14p in the presence of alpha-aminoadipate semialdehyde (alphaAASA), an intermediate of the pathway acting as a coinducer. This activation is reduced by the presence of lysine in the growth medium, leading to apparent repression. In this report we demonstrate that Saccharomyces cerevisiae possesses two genes, LYS20 and LYS21, encoding two homocitrate synthase isoenzymes which are located in the nucleus. Each isoform is inhibited by lysine with a different sensitivity. Lysine-overproducing mutants were isolated as resistant to aminoethylcysteine, a toxic lysine analog. Mutations, LYS20fbr and LYS21fbr, are allelic to LYS20 and LYS21, and lead to desensitization of homocitrate synthase activity towards lysine and to a loss of apparent repression by this amino acid. There is a fair correlation between the I0.5 of homocitrate synthase for lysine, the intracellular lysine pool and the levels of Lys enzymes, confirming the importance of the activity control of the first step of the pathway for the expression of LYS genes. The data are consistent with the conclusion that inhibition by lysine of Lys14p activation results from the control of alphaAASA production through the feedback inhibition of homocitrate synthase activity.

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