Membrane-lipid unsaturation and mitochondrial function in Saacharomyces cerevisiae.


The lipid composition of yeast cells was manipulated by the use of an unsaturated fatty acid auxotroph of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. There was a 2-3-fold decrease in the concentration of cytochromes a+a3 when the unsaturated fatty acid content of the cells was decreased from 60-70% of the total fatty acid to 20-30%. The amounts of cytochromes b and c were also decreased under these conditions, but to a lesser extent. Further lipid depletion, to proportions of less than 20% unsaturated fatty acid, led to a dramatic decrease in the content of all cytochromes, particularly cytochromes a+a3. The ATPase (adenosine triphosphatase), succinate oxidase and NADH oxidase activities of the isolated mitochondria also varied with the degree of unsaturation of the membrane lipids. The lower the percentage of unsaturated fatty acid, the lower was the enzymic activity. Inhibition of mitochondrial ATPase by oligomycin, on the other hand, was not markedly influenced by the membrane-lipid unsaturation. Npn-linear Arrenius plots of mitochondrial membrane-bound enzymes showed transition temperatures that were dependent on the degree of membrane-lipid unsaturation. The greater the degree of lipid unsaturation, the lower was the transition temperature. It was concluded that the degree of unsaturation of the membrane lipids plays an important role in determining the properties of mitochondrial membrane-bound enzymes.

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@article{Watson1975MembranelipidUA, title={Membrane-lipid unsaturation and mitochondrial function in Saacharomyces cerevisiae.}, author={K . A . Watson and Raymond L. Houghton and Enrico Bertoli and David E. Griffiths}, journal={The Biochemical journal}, year={1975}, volume={146 2}, pages={409-16} }