The SNF1 gene plays a central role in carbon catabolite repression in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, namely that SNF1 function is required for expression of glucose-repressible genes. The nucleotide sequence of the cloned SNF1 gene was determined, and the predicted amino acid sequence shows that SNF1 encodes a 72,040-dalton polypeptide that has significant homology to the conserved catalytic domain of mammalian protein kinases. Specific antisera were prepared and used to identify the SNF1 protein. The protein was shown to transfer phosphate from adenosine triphosphate to serine and threonine residues in an in vitro autophosphorylation reaction. These findings indicate that SNF1 encodes a protein kinase and suggest that protein phosphorylation plays a critical role in regulation by carbon catabolite repression in eukaryotic cells.
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