The structural gene for N-myristoyl transferase (NMT1) has been cloned from the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The gene encodes a polypeptide of 455 amino acids (Mr = 52,837) that has no identifiable significant primary sequence homology with any protein in currently available databases. Overexpression of NMT activity was achieved by means of the yeast episomal plasmid YEp24 without obvious effects on growth kinetics, cell morphology, or acylprotein metabolic labeling patterns. Insertional mutagenesis of the NMT1 locus on yeast chromosome XII caused recessive lethality, indicating that this protein acyltransferase activity is necessary for vegetative cell growth.
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