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Genes (Basel). 2019 Feb 19;10(2). pii: E158. doi: 10.3390/genes10020158.

A Magnesium Transport Protein Related to Mammalian SLC41 and Bacterial MgtE Contributes to Circadian Timekeeping in a Unicellular Green Alga.

Author information

1
School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH9 3BF, UK. Helen.Feord@ed.ac.uk.
2
School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH9 3BF, UK. freddiedear@hotmail.co.uk.
3
School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH9 3BF, UK. Darren.Obbard@ed.ac.uk.
4
School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, EH9 3BF, UK. Gerben.vanOoijen@ed.ac.uk.

Abstract

Circadian clocks in eukaryotes involve both transcriptional-translational feedback loops, post-translational regulation, and metabolic, non-transcriptional oscillations. We recently identified the involvement of circadian oscillations in the intracellular concentrations of magnesium ions (Mg2+i) that were conserved in three eukaryotic kingdoms. Mg2+i in turn contributes to transcriptional clock properties of period and amplitude, and can function as a zeitgeber to define phase. However, the mechanism-or mechanisms-responsible for the generation of Mg2+i oscillations, and whether these are functionally conserved across taxonomic groups, remain elusive. We employed the cellular clock model Ostreococcus tauri to provide a first study of an MgtE domain-containing protein in the green lineage. OtMgtE shares homology with the mammalian SLC41A1 magnesium/sodium antiporter, which has previously been implicated in maintaining clock period. Using genetic overexpression, we found that OtMgtE contributes to both timekeeping and daily changes in Mg2+i. However, pharmacological experiments and protein sequence analyses indicated that critical differences exist between OtMgtE and either the ancestral MgtE channel or the mammalian SLC41 antiporters. We concluded that even though MgtE domain-containing proteins are only distantly related, these proteins retain a shared role in contributing to cellular timekeeping and the regulation of Mg2+i.

KEYWORDS:

Ostreococcus tauri; cellular rhythms; circadian clocks; magnesium transport; transporter proteins

PMID:
30791470
PMCID:
PMC6410215
DOI:
10.3390/genes10020158
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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