Published on Nov. 15, 1995 in Mol Gen Genet volume 249.
PubMed ID: 7500935
The guanylyltransferase activity of mRNA capping enzyme catalyzes the transfer of GMP from GTP to the 5' terminus of mRNA. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the activity is carried on the alpha subunit of capping enzyme, the product of the CEG1 gene. We have isolated 10 recessive, temperature-sensitive mutations of CEG1; nine (ceg1-1 to ceg1-9) were isolated on a single-copy plasmid and the remaining one (ceg1-10) on a multicopy plasmid. The presence of ceg1-10 in multiple copies is essential for the viability of cells carrying the mutation, and a shift to the restrictive temperature resulted in rapid growth arrest of ceg1-10 cells, while growth rates of other mutants decreased gradually upon temperature upshift. Intragenic complementation was not observed for pairwise combinations of the mutations. Although the majority of the mutations occurred at the amino acid residues conserved between Ceg1 and the Schizosaccharomyces pombe homologue, none were located in the regions that are also conserved among viral capping enzymes and polynucleotide ligases. Guanylyltransferase activity of the mutant proteins as measured by covalent Ceg1-GMP complex formation was heat-labile. The availability of these mutants should facilitate studies of the structure-function relationships of capping enzyme, as well as the roles and regulation of mRNA capping.