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Mol Cell Biol. 2007 Aug;27(16):5725-36. Epub 2007 Jun 4.

Key role for intracellular K+ and protein kinases Sat4/Hal4 and Hal5 in the plasma membrane stabilization of yeast nutrient transporters.

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Instituto de Biología Molecular y Celular de Plantas, Universidad Politécnica de Valencia-CSIC, Camino de Vera s/n, 46022 Valencia, Spain.


K+ transport in living cells must be tightly controlled because it affects basic physiological parameters such as turgor, membrane potential, ionic strength, and pH. In yeast, the major high-affinity K+ transporter, Trk1, is inhibited by high intracellular K+ levels and positively regulated by two redundant "halotolerance" protein kinases, Sat4/Hal4 and Hal5. Here we show that these kinases are not required for Trk1 activity; rather, they stabilize the transporter at the plasma membrane under low K+ conditions, preventing its endocytosis and vacuolar degradation. High concentrations (0.2 M) of K+, but not Na+ or sorbitol, transported by undefined low-affinity systems, maintain Trk1 at the plasma membrane in the hal4 hal5 mutant. Other nutrient transporters, such as Can1 (arginine permease), Fur4 (uracil permease), and Hxt1 (low-affinity glucose permease), are also destabilized in the hal4 hal5 mutant under low K+ conditions and, in the case of Can1, are stabilized by high K+ concentrations. Other plasma membrane proteins such as Pma1 (H+ -pumping ATPase) and Sur7 (an eisosomal protein) are not regulated by halotolerance kinases or by high K+ levels. This novel regulatory mechanism of nutrient transporters may participate in the quiescence/growth transition and could result from effects of intracellular K+ and halotolerance kinases on membrane trafficking and/or on the transporters themselves.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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