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Eukaryot Cell. 2006 Feb;5(2):368-78.

Physiological importance and identification of novel targets for the N-terminal acetyltransferase NatB.

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  • 1Department of Cell and Molecular Biology, Lundberg Laboratory, Göteborg University, Medicinaregatan 9c, 413 90 Göteborg, Sweden.


The N-terminal acetyltransferase NatB in Saccharomyces cerevisiae consists of the catalytic subunit Nat3p and the associated subunit Mdm20p. We here extend our present knowledge about the physiological role of NatB by a combined proteomics and phenomics approach. We found that strains deleted for either NAT3 or MDM20 displayed different growth rates and morphologies in specific stress conditions, demonstrating that the two NatB subunits have partly individual functions. Earlier reported phenotypes of the nat3Delta strain have been associated with altered functionality of actin cables. However, we found that point mutants of tropomyosin that suppress the actin cable defect observed in nat3Delta only partially restores wild-type growth and morphology, indicating the existence of functionally important acetylations unrelated to actin cable function. Predicted NatB substrates were dramatically overrepresented in a distinct set of biological processes, mainly related to DNA processing and cell cycle progression. Three of these proteins, Cac2p, Pac10p, and Swc7p, were identified as true NatB substrates. To identify N-terminal acetylations potentially important for protein function, we performed a large-scale comparative phenotypic analysis including nat3Delta and strains deleted for the putative NatB substrates involved in cell cycle regulation and DNA processing. By this procedure we predicted functional importance of the N-terminal acetylation for 31 proteins.

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