The molecular neighborhood of subunit 8 of yeast mitochondrial F1F0-ATP synthase probed by cysteine scanning mutagenesis and chemical modification

J Biol Chem. 2003 May 16;278(20):17867-75. doi: 10.1074/jbc.M300967200. Epub 2003 Mar 7.


The detailed membrane topography and neighboring polypeptides of subunit 8 in yeast mitochondrial ATP synthase have been determined using a combination of cysteine scanning mutagenesis and chemical modification. 46 single cysteine substitution mutants encompassing the length of the subunit 8 protein were constructed by site-directed mutagenesis. Expression of each cysteine variant in yeast lacking endogenous subunit 8 restored respiratory phenotype to cells and had little measurable effect on ATP hydrolase function. The exposure of each introduced cysteine residue to the aqueous environment was assessed in isolated mitochondria using the fluorescent thiol-modifying probe fluorescein 5-maleimide. The first 14 and last 13 amino acids of subunit 8 were accessible to fluorescein 5-maleimide in osmotically lysed mitochondria and are thus extrinsic to the lipid bilayer, indicating a 21-amino acid transmembrane span. The C-terminal region of subunit 8 was partially occluded by other ATP synthase subunits, especially in a small region surrounding Val-40 that was demonstrated to play an important role in maintaining the stability of the F(1)-F(0) interaction. Cross-linking using heterobifunctional reagents revealed the proximity of subunit 8 to subunits b, d, and f in the matrix and to subunits b, f, and 6 in the intermembrane space. A disulfide bridge was also formed between subunit 8(F7C) or (M10C) and residue Cys-23 of subunit 6, demonstrating a close interaction between these two hydrophobic membrane subunits and confirming the location of the N termini of each in the intermembrane space. We conclude that subunit 8 is an integral component of the stator stalk of yeast mitochondrial F(1)F(0)-ATP synthase.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine Triphosphatases / metabolism
  • Adenosine Triphosphate / metabolism
  • Cross-Linking Reagents / pharmacology
  • Cysteine / chemistry*
  • Disulfides
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • Fungal Proteins / metabolism
  • Guanidine / pharmacology
  • Hydrolysis
  • Immunoblotting
  • Lipid Bilayers
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Models, Biological
  • Mutagenesis, Site-Directed
  • Mutation
  • Protein Binding
  • Protein Structure, Tertiary
  • Proton-Translocating ATPases / chemistry*
  • Proton-Translocating ATPases / metabolism
  • Temperature
  • Time Factors
  • Valine / chemistry


  • Cross-Linking Reagents
  • Disulfides
  • Fungal Proteins
  • Lipid Bilayers
  • Adenosine Triphosphate
  • Adenosine Triphosphatases
  • Proton-Translocating ATPases
  • Valine
  • Guanidine
  • Cysteine