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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Manganese superoxide dismutase in Saccharomyces cerevisiae acquires its metal co-factor through a pathway involving the Nramp metal transporter, Smf2p.

Eukaryotes express both copper/zinc (SOD1)- and manganese (SOD2)-requiring superoxide dismutase enzymes that guard against oxidative damage. Although SOD1 acquires its copper through a specific copper trafficking pathway, nothing is known regarding the intracellular manganese trafficking pathway for SOD2. We demonstrate here that in Saccharomyces cerevisiae cells delivery of manganese to SOD2 in the mitochondria requires the Nramp metal transporter, Smf2p. SOD2 activity is greatly diminished in smf2Delta mutants, even though the mature SOD2 polypeptide accumulates to normal levels in mitochondria. Treating smf2Delta cells with manganese supplements corrected the SOD2 defect, as did elevating intracellular manganese through mutations in PMR1. Hence, manganese appears to be inaccessible to mitochondrial SOD2 in smf2 mutants. Cells lacking SMF2 also exhibited defects in manganese-dependent steps in protein glycosylation and showed an overall decrease in steady-state levels of accumulated manganese. By comparison, mutations in the cell surface Nramp transporter, Smf1p, had very little impact on manganese accumulation and trafficking. Smf2p resides in intracellular vesicles and shows no evidence of plasma membrane localization, even in an end4 mutant blocked for endocytosis. We propose a model in which Smf2p-containing vesicles play a central role in manganese trafficking to the mitochondria and other cellular sites as well.[1]


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