Life Sciences (general)
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
Actin molecules are major cytoskeleton components of all eukaryotic cells. All conventional actins that have been identified so far are 374-376 amino acids in size and exhibit at least 70% amino acid sequence identity when compared with one another. In the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, one conventional actin gene ACT1 and three so-called actin-related genes, ACT2, ACT3 and ACT5, have been identified. We report here the discovery of a new actin-related gene in this organism, which we have named ACT4. The deduced protein, Act4, of 449 amino acids, exhibits only 33·4%, 26·7%, 23·4% and 29·2% identity to Act1, Act2, Act3 and Act5, respectively. In contrast, it is 68·4% identical to the product of the Schizosaccharomyces pombe Act2 gene and has a similar level of identity to other Sch. pombe Act2 homologues. This places Act4 in the Arp3 family of actin-related proteins. ACT4 gene disruption and tetrad analysis demonstrate that this gene is essential for the vegetative growth of yeast cells. The act4 mutants exhibit heterogenous morphological phenotypes. We hypothesize that Act4 may have multiple roles in the cell cycle. The sequence has been deposited in the Genome Sequence Data Base under Accession Number L37111.
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