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FEBS Lett. 2004 Jan 2;556(1-3):253-9.

Copper-induced oxidative stress in Saccharomyces cerevisiae targets enzymes of the glycolytic pathway.

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Department of Biology, Georgia State University, 24 Peachtree Center Avenue, Atlanta, GA 30303, USA.


Increased cellular levels of reactive oxygen species are known to arise during exposure of organisms to elevated metal concentrations, but the consequences for cells in the context of metal toxicity are poorly characterized. Using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis, combined with immunodetection of protein carbonyls, we report here that exposure of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae to copper causes a marked increase in cellular protein carbonyl levels, indicative of oxidative protein damage. The response was time dependent, with total-protein oxidation peaking approximately 15 min after the onset of copper treatment. Moreover, this oxidative damage was not evenly distributed among the expressed proteins of the cell. Rather, in a similar manner to peroxide-induced oxidative stress, copper-dependent protein carbonylation appeared to target glycolytic pathway and related enzymes, as well as heat shock proteins. Oxidative targeting of these and other enzymes was isoform-specific and, in most cases, was also associated with a decline in the proteins' relative abundance. Our results are consistent with a model in which copper-induced oxidative stress disables the flow of carbon through the preferred glycolytic pathway, and promotes the production of glucose-equivalents within the pentose phosphate pathway. Such re-routing of the metabolic flux may serve as a rapid-response mechanism to help cells counter the damaging effects of copper-induced oxidative stress.

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