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Yeast cells accumulate excess endogenous palmitate in phosphatidylcholine by acyl chain remodeling involving the phospholipase B Plb1p.

De Smet CH, Cox R, Brouwers JF, de Kroon AI
Biochimica et biophysica acta


In the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the molecular species profile of the major membrane glycerophospholipid phosphatidylcholine (PC) is determined by the molecular species-selectivity of the biosynthesis routes and by acyl chain remodeling. Overexpression of the glycerol-3-phosphate acyltransferase Sct1p was recently shown to induce a strong increase in the cellular content of palmitate (C16:0). Using stable isotope labeling and mass spectrometry, the present study shows that wild type yeast overexpressing Sct1p incorporates excess C16:0 into PC via the methylation of PE, the CDP-choline route, and post-synthetic acyl chain remodeling. Overexpression of Sct1p increased the extent of remodeling of PE-derived PC, providing a novel tool to perform mechanistic studies on PC acyl chain exchange. The exchange of acyl chains occurred at both the sn-1 and sn-2 positions of the glycerol backbone of PC, and required the phospholipase B Plb1p for optimal efficiency. Sct1p-catalyzed acyl chain exchange, the acyl-CoA binding protein Acb1p, the Plb1p homologue Plb2p, and the glycerophospholipid:triacylglycerol transacylase Lro1p were not required for PC remodeling. The results indicate that PC serves as a buffer for excess cellular C16:0.

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