PRS genes, a paradigm for gene duplication and its potential for yeast research?

Emily Murdoch, Eziuche Ugbogu, Lilian Mary Schweizer, Michael Schweizer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting abstractpeer-review


The S. cerevisiae genome contains five highly homologous PRS genes, each capable of encoding PRPP (phosphoribosyl-pyrophosphate) synthetase, a key enzyme essential for the synthesis of purine and pyrimidine nucleotides. PRS1andPRS5may have arisen from the prototype Prs-encoding genes, PRS2, PRS3andPRS4by duplication followed by acquisition of non-homologous regions (NHRs), shown to link primary metabolism with intracellular signalling. The PRS genes are highly conserved from yeast to human. We have created genocopies in PRS1 associated with the human neuropathies, Arts syndrome and CMTX5 which caused increased caffeine sensitivity and elevated Rlm1 expression in the mutated strains. The insertions in Prs1 and Prs5 serve as a physical link to the cell wall integrity (CWI) pathway and explain why cell viability requires specific heterodimers for the provision of PRPP and the maintenance of CWI integrity. The interaction between Prs1 and Mpk1/Slt2, a component of the CWI pathway was demonstrated by immunoprecipitation. Prs3 contains a NLS (nuclear localisation site), deletion of which causes caffeine sensitivity, reduced Rlm1 expression and loss of the Prs1/Prs3 heterodimer. The contribution of Prs5 to CWI is shown by increased phosphorylation of Mpk1/Slt2 following mutation of the three phosphosites located within NHR5-2. We now intend to investigate the signalling pathway connecting the conserved master regulator TOR (target of rapamycin) with PRPP synthetase, thus adding a new dimension to the application of yeast research in the discovery of novel therapeutic targets for the treatment of human neuropathies, CMTX5 and Arts syndrome.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages2
JournalAccess Microbiology
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jul 2022


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