It has been known for some time that the addition of acrude yeast cytosolic fraction to isolated mitochondria stimulates the rate of amino acid incorporation into protein in the isolated organelles. However, the mechanism and importance of this phenomenon relative to mitochondrial function has not been established. While it has been assumed that this effect is at the level of transition, the recognition that newly synthesized mitochondrial translation products are rapidly degraded in isolated yeast mitochondria raises the possibility that cytosol affects amino acid incorporation by inhibiting proteolysis. Using pulse-chase experiments we demonstrate that the rate constants of degradation of the nascent products are not affected by yeast cytosol. Further, not only is proteolysis not inhibited by cytosol, but the loss of label caused by proteolysis is actually increased. This increase is directly related to an increase in the size of the nascent product pool which increases simply as a consequence of increasing the rate of translation. By utilizing an approach in which the los of label due to proteolysis is minimized, the true stimulatory activity of the cytosolic fraction on synthesis was determined (2.1-fold vs 1.3-fold by the previous method). Pulse-chase experiments in the presence of pactamycin, an initiation inhibitor, demonstrate that yeast cytosol causes an initial increase in the rate of translational initiation without increasing the rate of elongation. However, at later intervals the yeast cytosol acts primarily to maintain the rate of elongation which falls steadily in the controls. Finally, the presence of yeast cytosol dramatically increases the length of incubation time in which the mitochondrial preparation consumes oxygen and maintains coupled respiration, parameters that fall rapidly in the controls. Thys, a yeast cytosolic fraction may function to promote the stability of the mitochondrial preparatio, which in turn may account for the increase in rates of translation, particularly with regard to maintaining rates of elongation.
- Mitochondrial biogenesis
- Mitochondrial protein synthesis
- Mitochondrial proteolysis
- Mitochondrial respiration