Polycystins are conserved mechanosensitive channels whose mutations lead to the common human renal disorder ADPKD. Previously we discovered that the plasma membrane-localized fission yeast homologue Pkd2p is an essential protein required for cytokinesis, but the mechanism remains unclear. Here, we isolated a novel temperature-sensitive mutant pkd2-B42. Among its strong growth defects, the most unique was that many mutant cells often lost significant portion of their volume in just 5 minutes followed by a gradual recovery, a process that we termed Deflation. Unlike cell lysis, deflation did not result in the plasma membrane rupture and it occurred independently from the cell cycle progression. The tip extension of pkd2-B42 cells was 80% slower than the wild type and their turgor pressure was 50% lower. Both pkd2-B42 and the other mutant pkd2-81KD partially rescued the mutants of the yeast Hippo signaling pathway Septation Initiation Network, by preventing cell lysis, enhancing septum formation, and doubling the number of Sid2/Mob1 molecules at the spindle pole bodies. We conclude that Pkd2p promotes cell size expansion during interphase by regulating turgor pressure and antagonizes SIN during cytokinesis.
Mutations of polycystins lead to human genetic disorder ADPKD. We discovered that the fission yeast homologue Pkd2p promotes the cell expansion during interphase growth and antagonizes the Hippo pathway SIN during cytokinesis.