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Eukaryot Cell. 2012 Oct;11(10):1191-200. doi: 10.1128/EC.00076-12. Epub 2012 May 18.

SPO71 mediates prospore membrane size and maturation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

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Department of Biology, University of Massachusetts-Boston, MA, USA.


The mechanisms that control the size and shape of membranes are not well understood, despite the importance of these structures in determining organelle and cell morphology. The prospore membrane, a double lipid bilayer that is synthesized de novo during sporulation in S. cerevisiae, grows to surround the four meiotic products. This membrane determines the shape of the newly formed spores and serves as the template for spore wall deposition. Ultimately, the inner leaflet of the prospore membrane will become the new plasma membrane of the cell upon germination. Here we show that Spo71, a pleckstrin homology domain protein whose expression is induced during sporulation, is critical for the appropriate growth of the prospore membrane. Without SPO71, prospore membranes surround the nuclei but are abnormally small, and spore wall deposition is disrupted. Sporulating spo71Δ cells have prospore membranes that properly localize components to their growing leading edges yet cannot properly localize septin structures. We also found that SPO71 genetically interacts with SPO1, a gene with homology to the phospholipase B gene that has been previously implicated in determining the shape of the prospore membrane. Together, these results show that SPO71 plays a critical role in prospore membrane development.

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