Mitochondrial Iron-Sulfur Cluster Activity and Cytosolic Iron Regulate Iron Traffic in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Academic Article uri icon


  • An ordinary differential equation-based mathematical model was developed to describe trafficking and regulation of iron in growing fermenting budding yeast. Accordingly, environmental iron enters the cytosol and moves into mitochondria and vacuoles. Dilution caused by increasing cell volume is included. Four sites are regulated, including those in which iron is imported into the cytosol, mitochondria, and vacuoles, and the site at which vacuolar Fe(II) is oxidized to Fe(III). The objective of this study was to determine whether cytosolic iron (Fecyt) and/or a putative sulfur-based product of iron-sulfur cluster (ISC) activity was/were being sensed in regulation. The model assumes that the matrix of healthy mitochondria is anaerobic, and that in ISC mutants, O2 diffuses into the matrix where it reacts with nonheme high spin Fe(II) ions, oxidizing them to nanoparticles and generating reactive oxygen species. This reactivity causes a further decline in ISC/heme biosynthesis, which ultimately gives rise to the diseased state. The ordinary differential equations that define this model were numerically integrated, and concentrations of each component were plotted versus the concentration of iron in the growth medium and versus the rate of ISC/heme biosynthesis. Model parameters were optimized by fitting simulations to literature data. The model variant that assumed that both Fecyt and ISC biosynthesis activity were sensed in regulation mimicked observed behavior best. Such "dual sensing" probably arises in real cells because regulation involves assembly of an ISC on a cytosolic protein using Fecyt and a sulfur species generated in mitochondria during ISC biosynthesis and exported into the cytosol.

published proceedings

  • J Biol Chem

altmetric score

  • 0.75

author list (cited authors)

  • Wofford, J. D., & Lindahl, P. A.

citation count

  • 20

complete list of authors

  • Wofford, Joshua D||Lindahl, Paul A

publication date

  • November 2015