Biochemical and biophysical research communications

The yeast chromatin remodeler Rsc1-RSC complex is required for transcriptional activation of autophagy-related genes and inhibition of the TORC1 pathway in response to nitrogen starvation.

PMID 26212438


The yeast RSC, an ATP-dependent chromatin-remodeling complex, is essential for mitotic and meiotic growth. There are two distinct isoforms of this complex defined by the presence of either Rsc1 or Rsc2; however, the functional differences between these complexes are unclear. Here we show that the RSC complex containing Rsc1, but not Rsc2, functions in autophagy induction. Rsc1 was required not only for full expression of ATG8 mRNA but also for maintenance of Atg8 protein stability. Interestingly, decreased autophagic activity and Atg8 protein stability in rsc1Δ cells, but not the defect in ATG8 mRNA expression, were partially suppressed by deletion of TOR1. In addition, we found that rsc1Δ impaired the binding between the Rho GTPase Rho1 and the TORC1-specific component Kog1, which is required for down-regulation of TORC1 activity. These results suggest that the Rsc1-containing RSC complex plays dual roles in the proper induction of autophagy: 1) the transcriptional activation of autophagy-related genes independent of the TORC1 pathway and 2) the inactivation of TORC1, possibly through enhancement of Rho1-Kog1 binding.