In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the COR2 gene codes for the 40 kDa subunit II of the QH2: cytochrome c oxidoreductase, an enzyme of the mitochondrial respiratory chain. Regions in the 5' flank of this gene important for regulated expression were identified by assaying beta-galactosidase activities in cells carrying different COR2-lacZ fusion genes. Sequences downstream of position -201 relative to the translational initiation codon are sufficient to confer regulation by carbon source, whereas sequences downstream of position -153 do not give rise to significant expression. A binding site for the abundant general transcription factor GFI is present in the region between -201 and -153 just upstream from sequences which resemble the consensus DNA recognition sequence of the regulatory protein complex HAP2/HAP3: 5'-TNATTGGT-3'. By quantitating RNA levels and assaying beta-galactosidase activities we show that synthesis of COR2, which is not a hemoprotein, is regulated by HAP1, HAP2/HAP3 and heme.