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Mol Microbiol. 1999 May;32(4):813-23.

P-type ATPase spf1 mutants show a novel resistance mechanism for the killer toxin SMKT.

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1
National Food Research Institute, 2-1-2 Kannon-dai, Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki-ken, 305-8642 Japan. csuzuki@nfri.affrc.go.jp

Abstract

SMKT, a killer toxin produced by the halotolerant yeast Pichia farinosa KK1, consists of alpha and beta subunits with folding remarkably similar to that of the fungal killer toxin KP4, a Ca2+ channel inhibitor. The budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae is sensitive to SMKT. To understand the killing mechanism of SMKT, we isolated SMKT-resistant mutants of S. cerevisiae and characterized them. Five spf mutants (sensitivity to the P. farinosa killer toxin) fell into a single genetic complementation group, designated spf1. The SPF1 gene was cloned by complementation of the mutant phenotype. The SPF1 gene encodes a putative P-type ATPase of 1215 amino acid residues that contains 12 membrane-spanning regions. Gene disruption revealed that the SPF1 gene is not essential for viability but is required for the sensitivity to SMKT. The spf1 disruptant showed some phenotypes characteristic of glycosylation-defective mutants and secreted underglycosylated invertase. Fluorescence-activated cell-sorting analysis and indirect immunofluorescence microscopy showed that SMKT interacts with the cell surface of the resistant cells but not with that of sensitive cells, suggesting a novel resistance mechanism for this toxin. The glycosylation-defective phenotype and possible killer-resistant mechanisms are discussed in comparison with the Golgi Ca2+ pump Pmr1p.

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