Regulation of mating type switching in Kluyveromyces lactis by the RAS/cAMP pathway and the transcription factor Msn2
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
We explored the regulation of mating type switching in Kluyveromyces lactis. Using an assay dependent on loss of a URA3 gene inserted into the MATa locus, we determined that the switching rate of a wild type strain grown in rich media was ~6X10-4 events/generation. In a genetic selection for identifying strains with increased switching rates, we found a strain with an insertion in the K. lactis RAS1 gene, encoding a small GTPase with a central role in growth regulation. Compromised Ras1 function leads to a lower cAMP level suggesting a role for cAMP in promoting switching. Consistent with this idea, a strain lacking the PDE2 gene, which encodes an enzyme that degrades cAMP, resulted in decreased switching rates. To explore how cAMP regulated switching, we investigated the transcription of the MTS1 gene, encoding an inducer of switching. The ras1 mutant strain contained 20-fold higher levels of the MTS1 mRNA compared to wild type, but in the pde2 mutant strain MTS1 transcription was repressed 5-fold. In addition, strains lacking the MSN2 gene, which encodes a transcription factor that binds the stress response element (STRE), expressed less MTS1 mRNA and had decreased switching rates. We suggest a model in which nutrient limitation induces switching through cAMP and Msn2-dependent transcriptional induction of the MTS1 gene.
mating type switch, K. lactis, Ras, cAMP Msn2, Pde2, Mts1
Research subject Zoological Developmental Biology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-42013OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-42013DiVA: diva2:343518