Dimerisation of the Yeast K+ Translocation Protein Trk1 Depends on the K+ Concentration

Natalia Kulik, Deepika Kale, Karin Spurna, Katsiaryna Shamayeva, Fabian Hauser, Sandra Milic, Hannah Janout, Vasilina Zayats, Jaroslaw Jacak, Jost Ludwig

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In baker’s yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae), Trk1, a member of the superfamily of K-transporters (SKT), is the main K+ uptake system under conditions when its concentration in the environment is low. Structurally, Trk1 is made up of four domains, each similar and homologous to a K-channel α subunit. Because most K-channels are proteins containing four channel-building α subunits, Trk1 could be functional as a monomer. However, related SKT proteins TrkH and KtrB were crystallised as dimers, and for Trk1, a tetrameric arrangement has been proposed based on molecular modelling. Here, based on Bimolecular Fluorescence Complementation experiments and single-molecule fluorescence microscopy combined with molecular modelling; we provide evidence that Trk1 can exist in the yeast plasma membrane as a monomer as well as a dimer. The association of monomers to dimers is regulated by the K+ concentration.

Original languageEnglish
Article number398
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2023


  • bimolecular fluorescence complementation
  • dimerisation
  • K translocation
  • MD simulation
  • molecular modelling
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae
  • Translocation, Genetic
  • Potassium/metabolism
  • Fungal Proteins/metabolism
  • Cation Transport Proteins/genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae/metabolism
  • Biological Transport
  • Cell Membrane/metabolism
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins/genetics
  • Carrier Proteins/metabolism


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