Metabolic Respiration Induces AMPK- and Ire1p-Dependent Activation of the p38-Type HOG MAPK Pathway

Hema Adhikari, Paul J. Cullen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations

Abstract

Evolutionarily conserved mitogen activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathways regulate the response to stress as well as cell differentiation. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, growth in non-preferred carbon sources (like galactose) induces differentiation to the filamentous cell type through an extracellular-signal regulated kinase (ERK)-type MAPK pathway. The filamentous growth MAPK pathway shares components with a p38-type High Osmolarity Glycerol response (HOG) pathway, which regulates the response to changes in osmolarity. To determine the extent of functional overlap between the MAPK pathways, comparative RNA sequencing was performed, which uncovered an unexpected role for the HOG pathway in regulating the response to growth in galactose. The HOG pathway was induced during growth in galactose, which required the nutrient regulatory AMP-dependent protein kinase (AMPK) Snf1p, an intact respiratory chain, and a functional tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. The unfolded protein response (UPR) kinase Ire1p was also required for HOG pathway activation in this context. Thus, the filamentous growth and HOG pathways are both active during growth in galactose. The two pathways redundantly promoted growth in galactose, but paradoxically, they also inhibited each other's activities. Such cross-modulation was critical to optimize the differentiation response. The human fungal pathogen Candida albicans showed a similar regulatory circuit. Thus, an evolutionarily conserved regulatory axis links metabolic respiration and AMPK to Ire1p, which regulates a differentiation response involving the modulated activity of ERK and p38 MAPK pathways.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPLoS genetics
Volume10
Issue number10
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2014

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