[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Saccharomyces cerevisiae gene SCO1 has been shown to play an essential role in the transfer of copper to the Cu(A)-centre of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase subunit Cox2p. By contrast, the function of Sco2p, the gene product of the highly homologous SCO2 gene, remains to be elucidated. Deletion of the SCO2 gene does not affect growth on a variety of carbon sources, including glycerol, lactate and ethanol. We report here, that Sco2p is anchored in the mitochondrial membrane by a single transmembrane segment and displays a similar tripartite structure as Sco1p. Most parts of Sco1p can be replaced by the homologous parts of Sco2p without loss of function. A short stretch of 13 amino acids, immediately adjacent to the transmembrane region, is crucial for Sco1p function and cannot be replaced by its Sco2p counterpart. We propose that this region is relevant for the correct spatial orientation of the C-terminal part of the protein. Immunoprecipitation and in vitro binding assays show that Sco2p interacts with the C-terminal portion of Cox2p. This interaction is neither dependent on bound copper ions nor on the presence of Sco1p. Furthermore we report on in vitro binding assays which show that Sco2p can form homomeric complexes, but also heteromeric complexes with Sco1p. Our data suggest that Sco2p is involved in the transfer of copper to Cox2p, but that this activity is insufficient for oxidative growth and not able to substitute for Sco1p activity.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mutations in SCO2, a cytochrome c oxidase (COX) assembly gene, have been reported in nine infants with early onset fatal cardioencephalomyopathy and a severe COX deficiency in striated muscle. Studies on a yeast homolog have suggested that human Sco2 acts as a copper chaperone, transporting copper to the Cu(A) site on the Cox II subunit, but the mechanism of action remains unclear. To investigate the molecular basis of pathogenesis of Sco2 defects in humans we performed genetic and biochemical studies on tissues, myoblasts and fibroblasts from affected patients, as well as on a recombinant human C-terminal Sco2 segment (22 kDa), bearing the putative CxxxC metal-binding motif. Recombinant Sco2 was shown to bind copper with a 1:1 stoichiometry and to form homomeric complexes in vitro, independent of the metal-binding motif. Immunohistochemistry using antibodies directed against different COX subunits showed a marked tissue-specific decrease in the Cox II/III subunits that form part of the catalytic core, consistent with the differential tissue involvement, but a more uniform distribution of Cox Vab, a nuclear-encoded subunit. Sco2 was severely reduced in patient fibroblasts and myoblasts by immunoblot analysis. Patient fibroblasts showed increased (64)Cu uptake but normal retention values and, consistent with this, the copper concentration was four times higher in Sco2-deficient myoblasts than in controls. COX activity in patient myoblasts was completely rescued by transduction with a retroviral vector expressing the human SCO2 coding sequence, and more interestingly by addition of copper-histidine (300 microM) to the culture medium. Whether the latter is accomplished by the very low residual levels of Sco2 in the patient cells, direct addition of copper to the Cu(A) site, or by another copper-binding protein remains unknown. Whatever the mechanism, this result suggests a possible therapy for the early treatment of this fatal infantile disease.
Human Molecular Genetics 01/2002; 10(26):3025-35. · 7.69 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Mutations of the yeast SCO1 gene result in impaired COX assembly. Recently, heterozygous mutations in the human homologue hSCO1 have been reported in infants suffering from neonatal ketoacidotic coma and isolated COX deficiency (Valnot et al., 2000). One of the hSCO1 alleles harboured a frame shift mutation resulting in a premature stop codon, the other a missense mutation leading to a substitution of proline(174) by leucine. This position is next to the essential CXXXC motif, which is conserved in all Sco1p homologues. We used chimeric proteins with the amino-terminal portion derived from yeast Sco1p and carboxy-terminal portion including the CXXXC motif from the human hSco1p to provide experimental evidence for the pathogenic nature of the P(174)L mutation. These chimeras are able to complement yeast sco1 null mutants. Introduction of the P(174)L mutation affects the function of these chimeric proteins severely, as shown by impaired COX assembly and loss of COX activity.
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 01/2001; · 2.28 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Yeast mitochondrial Sco1p is required for the formation of a functional cytochrome c oxidase (COX). It was suggested that Sco1p aids copper delivery to the catalytic center of COX. Here we show by affinity chromatography and coimmunoprecipitation that Sco1p interacts with subunit Cox2p. In addition we provide evidence that Sco1p can form homomeric complexes. Both homomer formation and binding of Cox2p are neither dependent on the presence of copper nor affected by mutations of His-239, Cys-148 or Cys-152. These amino acids, which are conserved among the members of the Sco1p family, have been suggested to act in the reduction of the cysteines in the copper binding center of Cox2p and are discussed as ligands for copper.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Translation of cytochrome b mRNA in yeast mitochondria requires activation by the nuclear-encoded Cbs1p. According to the current model, Cbs1p tethers cytochrome b mRNA to the inner mitochondrial membrane via interaction with the 5'-untranslated leader. Cbs1p is predicted to be a hydrophilic protein with two hydrophobic segments near the carboxyl-terminal end, which are both too short to span the membrane. Nevertheless Cbs1p is tightly associated with the mitochondrial membrane, as shown by its behaviour in extraction experiments with taurodeoxycholate. In an attempt to define functionally important regions of Cbs1p, we created a number of mutant alleles by random and directed mutagenesis. We report that a Cbs1p mutant protein lacking the mitochondrial presequence is still able to complement a Deltacbs1 strain, suggesting that the presequence does not contain essential mitochondrial targeting information. Mutations in a cluster of positively charged amino acids at the extremeC-terminus have no effect on Cbs1p function, but removal of this segment severely impairs Cbs1p function. Truncation of 12 or more amino acids from the C-terminus results in a completely defective protein. We further show that both short hydrophobic regions are essential for Cbs1p function, although membrane association is observed even in the absence of these regions.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cytochrome c oxidase is a multiprotein complex in the mitochondrial membrane whose biogenesis requires a number of proteins besides the structural subunits. Several yeast proteins as well as a human disease-related protein have been reported which are involved in cytochrome c oxidase assembly. The S. cerevisiae Sco1p protein has been implicated in the transfer of copper to cytochrome c oxidase subunits Cox1p and/or Cox2p. Here we report on the complementation behavior in yeast of two recently identified ScSco1p homologs of chromosome 17 and chromosome 22 from human. When allotropically expressed in yeast, both genes fail to complement the lack of the ScSCO1 gene. However, a chimera of the N-terminal half of ScSco1p and the C-terminal half of the chromosome 17 homolog does substitute for the ScSco1p function. Interestingly, the respective chimera with the human homolog of chromosome 22 is not able to complement. Expression of EGFP fusions in HeLa cells shows that both human ScSco1p homologs are located in the mitochondria of human cells.