Eukaryotic cells contain numerous cytosolic and nuclear iron-sulfur (Fe/S) proteins that perform key functions in metabolic catalysis, iron regulation, protein translation, DNA synthesis, and DNA repair. Synthesis of Fe/S clusters and their insertion into apoproteins are essential for viability and are conserved in eukaryotes. The process is catalyzed in two major steps by the CIA (cytosolic iron-sulfur protein assembly) machinery encompassing nine known proteins. First, a [4Fe-4S] cluster is assembled on a scaffold complex. This step requires a sulfur-containing compound from mitochondria and reducing equivalents from an electron transfer chain. Second, the Fe/S cluster is transferred from the scaffold to specific apoproteins by the CIA targeting complex. This review summarizes our molecular knowledge on CIA protein function during the assembly process.
Keywords: DNA helicase; DNA polymerases; Iron–sulfur cluster; genome integrity; iron regulation; mitochondrial ISC system.
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