There is an ongoing debate on how peroxisomes form: by growth and fission of pre-existing peroxisomes or de novo from another membrane. It has been proposed that, in wild type yeast cells, peroxisome fission and careful segregation of the organelles over mother cells and buds is essential for organelle maintenance. Using live cell imaging we observed that cells of the yeast Hansenula polymorpha, lacking the peroxisome fission protein Pex11, still show peroxisome fission and inheritance. Also, in cells of mutants without the peroxisome inheritance protein Inp2 peroxisome segregation can still occur. In contrast, peroxisome fission and inheritance were not observed in cells of a pex11 inp2 double deletion strain. In buds of cells of this double mutant, new organelles likely appear de novo. Growth of pex11 inp2 cells on methanol, a growth substrate that requires functional peroxisomes, is retarded relative to the wild type control. Based on these observations we conclude that in H. polymorpha de novo peroxisome formation is a rescue mechanism, which is less efficient than organelle fission and inheritance to maintain functional peroxisomes.
- Hansenula polymorpha