The target of rapamycin complex I (TORC1) regulates cell growth and metabolism in eukaryotes. Previous studies have shown that nitrogen and amino acid signals activate TORC1 via the small GTPases, Gtr1/2. However, little is known about the way that other nutrient signals are transmitted to TORC1. Here we report that glucose starvation triggers disassembly of TORC1, and movement of the key TORC1 component Kog1/Raptor to a single body near the edge of the vacuole. These events are driven by Snf1/AMPK-dependent phosphorylation of Kog1 at Ser 491/494 and two nearby prion-like motifs. Kog1-bodies then serve to increase the threshold for TORC1 activation in cells that have been starved for a significant period of time. Together, our data show that Kog1-bodies create hysteresis (memory) in the TORC1 pathway and help ensure that cells remain committed to a quiescent state under suboptimal conditions. We suggest that other protein bodies formed in starvation conditions have a similar function.
- Kevin Struhl, Harvard Medical School, United States
© 2015, Hughes Hallett et al.
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Three-component ParABS partition systems ensure stable inheritance of many bacterial chromosomes and low-copy-number plasmids. ParA localizes to the nucleoid through its ATP-dependent nonspecific DNA-binding activity, whereas centromere-like parS-DNA and ParB form partition complexes that activate ParA-ATPase to drive the system dynamics. The essential parS sequence arrangements vary among ParABS systems, reflecting the architectural diversity of their partition complexes. Here, we focus on the pSM19035 plasmid partition system that uses a ParBpSM of the ribbon-helix-helix (RHH) family. We show that parSpSM with four or more contiguous ParBpSM-binding sequence repeats is required to assemble a stable ParApSM-ParBpSM complex and efficiently activate the ParApSM-ATPase, stimulating complex disassembly. Disruption of the contiguity of the parSpSM sequence array destabilizes the ParApSM-ParBpSM complex and prevents efficient ATPase activation. Our findings reveal the unique architecture of the pSM19035 partition complex and how it interacts with nucleoid-bound ParApSM-ATP.
Electron bifurcation is a fundamental energy conservation mechanism in nature in which two electrons from an intermediate-potential electron donor are split so that one is sent along a high-potential pathway to a high-potential acceptor and the other is sent along a low-potential pathway to a low-potential acceptor. This process allows endergonic reactions to be driven by exergonic ones and is an alternative, less recognized, mechanism of energy coupling to the well-known chemiosmotic principle. The electron-bifurcating [FeFe] hydrogenase from Thermotoga maritima (HydABC) requires both NADH and ferredoxin to reduce protons generating hydrogen. The mechanism of electron bifurcation in HydABC remains enigmatic in spite of intense research efforts over the last few years. Structural information may provide the basis for a better understanding of spectroscopic and functional information. Here, we present a 2.3 Å electron cryo-microscopy structure of HydABC. The structure shows a heterododecamer composed of two independent ‘halves’ each made of two strongly interacting HydABC heterotrimers connected via a [4Fe–4S] cluster. A central electron transfer pathway connects the active sites for NADH oxidation and for proton reduction. We identified two conformations of a flexible iron–sulfur cluster domain: a ‘closed bridge’ and an ‘open bridge’ conformation, where a Zn2+ site may act as a ‘hinge’ allowing domain movement. Based on these structural revelations, we propose a possible mechanism of electron bifurcation in HydABC where the flavin mononucleotide serves a dual role as both the electron bifurcation center and as the NAD+ reduction/NADH oxidation site.