We recently identified the Saccharomyces cerevisiae COQ7 gene and showed that its product affects one or more monoxygenase steps in the synthesis of ubiquinone. Other investigators have independently isolated the yeast COQ7 gene as CAT5 and identified it as a gene necessary for the derepression of gluconeogenic enzymes in yeast. In the present study, a homolog of the yeast COQ7 (CAT5) gene was isolated from a rat testis cDNA library by functional complementation of a coq7 deletion mutant of S. cerevisiae. The resulting cDNA clones contained a 0.8-kb insert with an open reading frame encoding a 183-amino-acid polypeptide. The rat Coq7 amino acid sequence is 49% identical to that of yeast Coq7p and 58% identical to a C. elegans homolog over a 152-aa region. Sequence homology searches fail to identify any other significant homologies. The Coq7 gene was mapped to mouse chromosome 7, 7.6 +/- 3.6 cM proximal to the marker D7Mit7, by linkage analysis of an interspecific backcross. This region of chromosome 7 containing Coq7 is part of a linkage group conserved between mouse chromosome 7 and human chromosome 11p15.