The central features of nuclear import have been conserved during evolution. In yeast the nuclear accumulation of proteins follows the same selective and active transport mechanisms known from higher eukaryotes. Yeast nuclear proteins contain nuclear localization sequences (NLS) which are presumably recognized by receptors in the cytoplasm and the nuclear envelope. Subsequent to this recognition step, nuclear proteins are translocated into the nucleus via the nuclear pore complexes. The structure of the yeast nuclear pore complex resembles that of higher eukaryotes. Recently, the first putative components of the yeast nuclear import machinery have been cloned and sequenced. The genetically amenable yeast system allows for an efficient structural and functional analysis of these components. Due to the evolutionary conservation potential insights into the nuclear import mechanisms in yeast can be transferred to higher eukaryotes. Thus, yeast can be considered as a eukaryotic model system to study nuclear transport.
- Saccharomyces cerevisiae
- nuclear localization sequence
- nuclear pore complex
- nuclear transport