alexa Mutants in the Saccharomyces cerevisiae RAS2 gene influence life span, cytoskeleton, and regulation of mitosis.
Genetics & Molecular Biology

Genetics & Molecular Biology

Fungal Genomics & Biology

Author(s): Pichov A, Vondrkov D, Breitenbach M

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Abstract We investigated the phenotypic consequences in Saccharomyces cerevisiae of a disruption allele (ras2::LEU2) and of a dominant mutant form (RAS2ala18,val19) of RAS2. In addition to the phenotypes described earlier for these mutants, we observed a small increase in the life span for the disruption allele and a drastic decrease of life span for the dominant mutant form, as compared with the isogenic wild type. This was found by analyzing these alleles in two different genetic backgrounds with nearly the same results. Life spans were determined by micromanipulating mother cells and counting generations until no further cell division occurred. A morphological analysis of the terminal phenotypes of very old mother cells was performed showing enlarged or rounded cells and in some cases elongated buds, some of which were difficult to separate from the mother cell. This was observed in wild-type cells, as well as mutant cells. However, the dominant RAS2 mutant (but not the wild-type or ras2::LEU2 mutant cells) after 2 days on complex media displayed phenotypes similar to the terminal phenotype of old mothers. A substantial fraction of the cells were enlarged and generated elongated buds, they lost Calcofluor staining of the bud scars, the cell surface appeared folded, the actin cytoskeleton was aberrant, and the mitotic spindle and the cytoplasmic microtubles were defective in their proper orientation, resulting in aberrant mitoses and empty buds. These phenotypic characteristics of the RAS2ala18,val19 mutation could be causative for the previously observed rapid loss of viability of these cells in stationary phase.
This article was published in Can J Microbiol and referenced in Fungal Genomics & Biology

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