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2016 | 63 | 2 | 371-375
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Difference in the late ergosterol biosynthesis between yeast spheroplasts and intact cells

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A comparative study on post-squalene sterol synthesis in intact yeast cells and spheroplasts was carried out with strains from three genera (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Schizosaccharomyces pombe, Pichia pastoris) as well as with engineered S. cerevisiae cells altered in regard to the late ergosterol synthesis pathway. A common outcome of incubation experiments with radioactive acetate was that in intact cells the metabolic pathway flows till its specific end product (ergosterol and its precursor, depending on the enzyme deficiency), whereas in spheroplasts the pathway was stalled some step upstream. For example, in spheroplasts from wt strains, non-cyclic triterpenes squalene and oxidosqualene accumulated as though the metabolic path was kept from producing steroid-shaped molecules different from the end product. Accumulation of non-cyclic triterpenes was observed also in spheroplasts from S. cerevisiae cells lacking 3-ketosteroid reductase activity, an enzyme belonging to the C4-demethylase complex. When production of cyclic triterpenes was compromised by loss or poor functionality of oxidosqualene cyclase (EC, the difference between intact cells and spheroplasts was still remarkable, yet limited to the different oxido/dioxidosqualene ratio. The characteristics of spheroplasts as non-proliferating cells may partially explain the observed differences in post-squalene pathway from intact cells. We cannot say if the difference in metabolic pathways in spheroplasts and intact cells is a rule. We think, however, that it is worthwhile to search for an answer, as a wider picture of the points where the metabolic pathways are stalled in spheroplasts could provide original ideas about the metabolic network in yeast.
Physical description
  • University of Torino, Department of Drug Science and Technology, Torino, Italy
  • University of Torino, Department of Drug Science and Technology, Torino, Italy
  • University of Torino, Department of Drug Science and Technology, Torino, Italy
  • University of Torino, Department of Drug Science and Technology, Torino, Italy
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