Differential regulation of serine acetyltransferase is involved in nickel hyperaccumulation in Thlaspi goesingense

GunNam Na, David E. Salt

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14 Citations (Scopus)
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When growing in its native habitat, Thlaspi goesingense can hyperaccumulate 1.2% of its shoot dry weight as nickel We reported previously that both constitutively elevated activity of serine acetyltransferase (SAT) and concentration of glutathione (GSH) are involved in the ability of T. goesingense to tolerate nickel. A feature of SAT is its feedback inhibition by L-cysteine. To understand the role of this regulation of SAT by Cys on GSH-mediated nickel tolerance in T. goesingense, we characterized the enzymatic properties of SATs from T. goesingense. We demonstrate that all three isoforms of SAT in T. goesingense are insensitive to inhibition by Cys. Further, two amino acids (proline and alanine) in the C-terminal region of the cytosolic SAT (SAT-c) from T. goesingense are responsible for converting the enzyme from a Cys-sensitive to a Cys-insensitive form. Furthermore, the Cys-insensitive isoform of SAT-c confers elevated resistance to nickel when expressed in Escherichia colt and Arabidopsis thaliana, supporting a role for altered regulation of SAT by Cys in nickel tolerance in T. goesingense.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)40423-40432
Number of pages10
JournalThe Journal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number47
Early online date19 Sept 2011
Publication statusPublished - 25 Nov 2011


  • cysteine synthase complex
  • Escherichia-Coli
  • arabidopsis-thaliana
  • molecular-cloning
  • higher-plants
  • subcellular-l9ocalization
  • sulfur assimilation
  • kinetic-properties
  • cytosolic isoform
  • biosynthesis


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