* Department of Molecular & Integrative Physiology ** Department of Statistics University of Illinois Urbana, IL 61801
Received August 7, 2001/Accepted October 3, 2001
DNA arrays were used to investigate the functional role of Rox1 in mediating acclimatization to anaerobic conditions in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Multiple growth conditions for wild-type and rox1 null strains were used to identify ORFs with a statistically robust response to this repressor. These results were compared to those obtained for a wild-type strain in response to oxygen availability. Transcripts of nearly one sixth of the genome were differentially expressed (p<0.05) with respect to oxygen availability, the majority (>65%) being down-regulated under anoxia. Of the anaerobically induced genes, about one third (106) contain putative Rox1-binding sites in their promoters and were significantly (p<0.05) up-regulated in the rox1 null strains under aerobiosis. Additional promoter searches revealed nearly one third of the anaerobically induced genes contain an AR1 site(s) for the Upc2 transcription factor, suggesting that Upc2 and Rox1 regulate the majority of anaerobically induced genes in S. cerevisiae. Functional analyses indicate a large fraction of the anaerobically induced genes are involved in cell stress (~1/3), cell wall maintenance (~1/8), carbohydrate metabolism (~1/10), and lipid metabolism (~1/12), with both Rox1 and Upc2 predominating in the regulation of this latter group and Upc2 predominating in cell wall maintenance. Mapping the changes in expression of functional regulons onto metabolic pathways has provided novel insight into the role of Rox1 and other trans-acting factors in mediating the physiological response of S. cerevisiae to anaerobic conditions.
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