Clark-Walker GD, Chen XJ

Genetics. 2001 Nov;159(3):929–38

Loss of mtDNA or mitochondrial protein synthesis cannot be tolerated by wild-type Kluyveromyces lactis. The mitochondrial function responsible for rho(0)-lethality has been identified by disruption of nuclear genes encoding electron transport and F(0)-ATP synthase components of oxidativephosphorylation. Sporulation of diploid strains heterozygous for disruptions in genes for the two components of oxidative phosphorylation results in the formation of nonviable spores inferred to contain both disruptions. Lethality of spores is thought to result from absence of a transmembrane potential, Delta Psi, across the mitochondrial inner membrane due to lack of proton pumping by the electron transport chain or reversal of F(1)F(0)-ATP synthase. Synergistic lethality, caused by disruption of nuclear genes, or rho(0)-lethality can be suppressed by the atp2.1 mutation in the beta-subunit of F(1)-ATPase. Suppression is viewed as occurring by an increased hydrolysis of ATP by mutant F(1), allowing sufficient electrogenic exchange by the translocase of ADP in the matrix for ATP in the cytosol to maintain Delta Psi. In addition, lethality of haploid strains with a disruption of AAC encoding the ADP/ATP translocase can be suppressed by atp2.1. In this case suppression is considered to occur by mutant F(1) acting in the forward direction to partially uncouple ATP production, thereby stimulating respiration and relieving detrimental hyperpolarization of the inner membrane. Participation of the ADP/ATP translocase in suppression of rho(0)-lethality is supported by the observation that disruption of AAC abolishes suppressor activity of atp2.1.