The Role of Glutathione peroxidase and Catalase in Mediating the AntioxidantProperties of Proline in Saccharomyces cerevisiae

by Grant Turner and Cameron Matters
Faculty advisor: Dr. Brian Lenzmeier

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are naturally generated through the process of creating energy for the body, generated. In order for cells to survive, they must be able to process these ROS. It has been hypothesized that high levels of the amino acid proline helps protect cells from ROS. The exact mechanism for proline’s putative antioxidant properties is currently not known. We hypothesize that proline may work through either glutathione peroxidase (GPx) or catalase. These are enzymes capable of processing ROS like hydrogen peroxide. Using baker’s yeast as a model research organism we are exposing cells to high levels of proline and monitoring its affect on the activity of GPx and catalase enzymes in cell-free extracts isolated from those cells. We will present our research findings and will outline future studies that will include research with other mutated forms of yeast to identify the exact cellular processes that mediate the antioxidant properties of proline.