Journal Article

The Cytochrome <i>c</i> Gene from the Green Alga <i>Chlamydomonas reinhardtii</i>. Structure and Expression in Wild-Type Cells and in Obligate Photoautotrophic (dk) Mutants

Silvina A. Felitti, Raquel L. Chan, Manuel González Sierra and Daniel H. Gonzalez

in Plant and Cell Physiology

Published on behalf of Japanese Society of Plant Physiologists

Volume 41, issue 10, pages 1149-1156
Published in print October 2000 | ISSN: 0032-0781
Published online October 2000 | e-ISSN: 1471-9053 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/pcp/pcd044
The Cytochrome c Gene from the Green Alga Chlamydomonas reinhardtii. Structure and Expression in Wild-Type Cells and in Obligate Photoautotrophic (dk) Mutants

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The expression of the Chlamydomonas reinhardtii cytochrome c gene was studied at the steady-state mRNA level. The inclusion of acetate under illumination produced a marked increase in cytochrome c transcripts. This effect was not affected by two inhibitors of mitochondrial energy metabolism. Three different obligate photoautotrophic mutants with defective mitochondria showed normal levels of induction, suggesting that utilization of acetate for respiration is not required for this process. Light, in the presence or absence of acetate, also promoted an increase in cytochrome c transcript levels. This effect could be abolished by treatment of the cells with an inhibitor of the photosynthetic electron transport chain, suggesting that light acts through photosynthesis to promote the induction. In addition, a genomic clone encompassing the Chlamydomonas cytochrome c gene has been isolated and analyzed. The gene contains three introns, two of which are located at positions similar to those in the rice and Arabidopsis cytochrome c genes, indicating the existence of an evolutionary link. It is concluded that the cytochrome c gene from C. reinhardtii is subject to metabolic regulation through a mechanism that responds to the intracellular level of either acetate or a compound derived from its metabolization through a pathway different from mitochondrial respiration.

Keywords: Key words: Chlamydomonas reinhardtii — Cytochrome c — Exon/intron structure — Gene expression — Mitochondrion.; Abbreviations: CCCP, carbonyl cyanide m-chlorophenylhydrazone; NMR, nuclear magnetic resonance; TCA, tricarboxylic acids.; The nucleotide sequence reported in this paper has been submitted to the EMBL, GenBank and DDBJ under accession number Z99829.

Journal Article.  5284 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Biochemistry ; Molecular and Cell Biology ; Plant Sciences and Forestry

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