Arsenic stress elicits cytosolic Ca2+ bursts and Crz1 activation in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

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Although arsenic is notoriously poisonous to life, its utilization in therapeutics brings many benefits to human health, so it is therefore essential to discover the molecular mechanisms underlying arsenic stress responses in eukaryotic cells. Aiming to determine the contribution of Ca2+ signalling pathways to arsenic stress responses, we took advantage of the use of Saccharomyces cerevisiae as a model organism. Here we show that Ca2+ enhances the tolerance of the wild-type and arsenic-sensitive yap1 strains to arsenic stress in a Crz1-dependent manner, thus providing the first evidence that Ca2+ signalling cascades are involved in arsenic stress responses. Moreover, our results indicate that arsenic shock elicits a cytosolic Ca2+ burst in these strains, without the addition of exogenous Ca2+ sources, strongly supporting the notion that Ca2+ homeostasis is disrupted by arsenic stress. In response to an arsenite-induced increase of Ca2+ in the cytosol, Crz1 is dephosphorylated and translocated to the nucleus, and stimulates CDRE-driven expression of the lacZ reporter gene in a Cnb1-dependent manner. The activation of Crz1 by arsenite culminates in the induction of the endogenous genes PMR1, PMC1 and GSC2. Taken together, these data establish that activation of Ca2+ signalling pathways and the downstream activation of the Crz1 transcription factor contribute to arsenic tolerance in the eukaryotic model organism S. cerevisiae.
Original languageUnknown
Pages (from-to)2293-2302
Issue numberNA
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012

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