The linkage of (1–3)-β-glucan to chitin during cell wall assembly in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

Authors

  • Robbert P. Hartland,

    1. Department of Plant Biology, University of Groningen, Biological Centre, 9715 NN Haren, The Netherlands
    Current affiliation:
    1. Institut Pasteur, Unite de Mycologie, 25 Rue du Docteur Roux, 75724 Paris Cedex 15, France
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Cees A. Vermeulen,

    1. Department of Plant Biology, University of Groningen, Biological Centre, 9715 NN Haren, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Johannes H. Sietsma,

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Plant Biology, University of Groningen, Biological Centre, 9715 NN Haren, The Netherlands
    • Department of Plant Biology, University of Groningen, Biological Centre, 9715 NN Haren, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Joseph G. H. Wessels,

    1. Department of Plant Biology, University of Groningen, Biological Centre, 9715 NN Haren, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author
  • Frans M. Klis

    1. Department of Molecular Cell Biology, University of Amsterdam, BioCentrum Amsterdam, 1098 SM Amsterdam, The Netherlands
    Search for more papers by this author

Abstract

Pulse-chase experiments with [14C]glucose demonstrated that in the cell wall of wild-type Saccharomyces cerevisiae alkali-soluble (1–3)-β-glucan serves as a precursor for alkali-insoluble (1–3)-β-glucan. The following observations support the notion that the insolubilization of the glucan is caused by linkage to chitin: (i) degradation of chitin by chitinase completely dissolved the glucan, and (ii) disruption of the gene for chitin synthase 3 prevented the formation of alkali-insoluble glucan. These cells, unable to form a glucan–chitin complex, were highly vulnerable to hypo-osmotic shock indicating that the linkage of the two polymers significantly contributes to the mechanical strength of the cell wall.

Conversion of alkali-soluble glucan into alkali-insoluble glucan occurred both early and late during budding and also in the ts-mutant cdc24-1 in the absence of bud formation.

Ancillary