Suppression of ρ0 lethality by mitochondrial ATP synthase F1 mutations in Kluyveromyces lactis occurs in the absence of F0
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Specific mgi mutations in the α, β or γ subunits of the mitochondrial F1-ATPase have previously been found to suppress ρ0 lethality in the petite-negative yeast Kluyveromyces lactis. To determine whether the suppressive activity of the altered F1 is dependent on the F0 sector of ATP synthase, we isolated and disrupted the genes KlATP4, 5 and 7, the three nuclear genes encoding subunits b, OSCP and d. Strains disrupted for any one, or all three of these genes are respiration deficient and have reduced viability. However a strain devoid of the three nuclear genes is still unable to lose mitochondrial DNA, whereas a mgi mutant with the three genes inactivated remains petite-positive. In the latter case, ρ0 mutants can be isolated, upon treatment with ethidium bromide, that lack six major F0 subunits, namely the nucleus-encoded subunits b, OSCP and d, and the mitochondrially encoded Atp6, 8 and 9p. Production of ρ0 mutants indicates that an F1-complex carrying a mgi mutation can assemble in the absence of F0 subunits and that suppression of ρ0 lethality is an intrinsic property of the altered F1 particle.
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