Tuesday, November 27, 2007

The polypeptides COX2A and COX2B are essential components of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase of Toxo

Biochim Biophys Acta. 2007 Nov 5; [Epub ahead of print]

The polypeptides COX2A and COX2B are essential components of the mitochondrial cytochrome c oxidase of Toxoplasma gondii

Morales-Sainz L, Escobar-Ramírez A, Cruz-Torres V, Reyes-Prieto A, Vázquez-Acevedo M, Lara-Martínez R, Jiménez-García LF, González-Halphen D

Departamento de Genética Molecular, Instituto de Fisiología, Celular, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico.

Two genes encoding cytochrome c oxidase subunits, Cox2a and Cox2b, are present in the nuclear genomes of apicomplexan parasites and show sequence similarity to corresponding genes in chlorophycean algae. We explored the presence of COX2A and COX2B subunits in the cytochrome c oxidase of Toxoplasma gondii. Antibodies were raised against a synthetic peptide containing a 14-residue fragment of the COX2A polypeptide and against a hexa-histidine-tagged recombinant COX2B protein. Two distinct immunochemical stainings localized the COX2A and COX2B proteins in the parasite's mitochondria. A mitochondria-enriched fraction exhibited cyanide-sensitive oxygen uptake in the presence of succinate. T. gondii mitochondria were solubilized and subjected to Blue Native Electrophoresis followed by second dimension electrophoresis. Selected protein spots from the 2D gels were subjected to mass spectrometry analysis and polypeptides of mitochondrial complexes III, IV and V were identified. Subunits COX2A and COX2B were detected immunochemically and found to co-migrate with complex IV; therefore, they are subunits of the parasite's cytochrome c oxidase. The apparent molecular mass of the T. gondii mature COX2A subunit differs from that of the chlorophycean alga Polytomella sp. The data suggest that during its biogenesis, the mitochondrial targeting sequence of the apicomplexan COX2A precursor protein may be processed differently than the one from its algal counterpart.

PMID: 18036550 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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