Communication between mitochondria and the nucleus is important for a variety of cellular processes such as carbohydrate and nitrogen metabolism, mating and sporulation, and cell growth and morphogenesis. It has long been known that the functional state of mitochondria can influence nuclear gene expression. For example, in yeast cells lacking the mitochondrial genome, the expression of several nuclear genes, such as CIT2 (citrate synthase), MRP13 (mitochondrial ribosomal protein), and DLD3 (d-lactate dehydrogenase) has been reported to be altered. Here we show by microarray analysis of the genome-wide transcription profile of Saccharomyces cerevisiae that yeast petite mutants lacking mitochondrial DNA induce genes coding for mitochondrial proteins, enzymes of the glycolytic pathway and of the citric acid cycle, cell wall components, membrane transporters, and genes normally induced by nutrient deprivation and a variety of stresses. Consistent with the observed induction of genes related to cell stress and those encoding membrane transporters, yeast petite cells showed increased resistance to severe heat shock and exhibited a pleiotropic drug resistance phenotype. The observed changes in nuclear gene expression in cells lacking mitochondrial DNA may have implications for the role of mitochondria in processes such as carcinogenesis and aging.
Traven, A., Wong, J. WS., Xu, D., Sopta, M., & Ingles, C. J. (2001). Interorganellar communication. Altered nuclear gene expression profiles in a yeast mitochondrial dna mutant. The Journal of Biological Chemistry, 276(6), 4020 - 4027. https://doi.org/10.1074/jbc.M006807200