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J Cell Sci. 2019 Apr 17;132(8). pii: jcs230649. doi: 10.1242/jcs.230649.

Reliable imaging of ATP in living budding and fission yeast.

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Gunma University Initiative for Advanced Research (GIAR), Gunma University, Maebashi 371-8512, Japan
Institute for Molecular and Cellular Regulation (IMCR), Gunma University, Maebashi 371-8512, Japan.
Department of Molecular Biotechnology, Graduate School of Advanced Sciences of Matter, Hiroshima University, Japan.
Research Center for the Mathematics on Chromatin Live Dynamics, Hiroshima University, Japan.
Center for Gene Science, Hiroshima University, 1-4-2 Kagamiyama, Higashi-Hiroshima 739-8527, Japan.
Department of Functional Biology, Graduate School of Biostudies, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8501, Japan.
School of International Liberal Studies, Waseda University, Tokyo, 169-8050, Japan.
Japan Science and Technology Agency, PREST.


Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is a main metabolite essential for all living organisms. However, our understanding of ATP dynamics within a single living cell is very limited. Here, we optimized the ATP-biosensor QUEEN and monitored the dynamics of ATP with good spatial and temporal resolution in living yeasts. We found stable maintenance of ATP concentration in wild-type yeasts, regardless of carbon sources or cell cycle stages, suggesting that mechanism exists to maintain ATP at a specific concentration. We further found that ATP concentration is not necessarily an indicator of metabolic activity, as there is no clear correlation between ATP level and growth rates. During fission yeast meiosis, we found a reduction in ATP levels, suggesting that ATP homeostasis is controlled by differentiation. The use of QUEEN in yeasts offers an easy and reliable assay for ATP dynamicity and will answer several unaddressed questions about cellular metabolism in eukaryotes.


ATP; Carbon metabolism; Homeostasis; Meiosis; Metabolism; Mitochondria; Yeast


Conflict of interest statement

Competing interestsThe authors declare no competing or financial interests.

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