A putative rhamnogalacturonase required for sexual development of Neurospora crassa.
ABSTRACT: In previous work, the asd-I (ascus development) gene of the filamentous fingus Neurospora crassa was identified as a gene expressed preferentially during the sexual cycle and shown to be essential for normal sexual development. The asd-I gene has been sequenced and further characterized. It contains two introns, the first of which is in-frame and inefficiently or differentially spliced. The predicted ASD-I protein has extensive homology with rhamnogalacturonase B of Aspergillus aculeatus, which cleaves the backbone within the ramified hairy regions of pectin. In homozygous asd-I crosses, sexual development is initiated and large numbers of normal-sized asci are formed. Ascospore delineation does not occur, however, and no sexual progeny are produced. As most asd-I asci contain eight nuclei, the two meiotic divisions and subsequent mitotic division typical of normal crosses seem to occur, but the haploid nuclei are not partitioned into ascospores. In wild-type crosses, the ASD-I protein is present in large amounts in croziers and young asci, but it is only faintly detectable in more mature asci containing developing ascospores. Models to explain the possible role of a rhamnogalacturonase in sexual development are presented.
Project description:By introgressing Neurospora crassa translocations into N. tetrasperma, we constructed heterokaryons bearing haploid nuclei of opposite mating types, and either the translocation and normal sequence chromosomes (i.e., [T + N]) or a duplication and its complementary deficiency (i.e., [Dp + Df]). The [T + N] heterokaryons result from alternate segregation of homologous centromeres, whereas adjacent-1 segregation generates [Dp + Df]. Self-cross of either heterokaryon produces [T + N] and [Dp + Df] progeny. Occasionally during N. tetrasperma ascus development, a pair of smaller homokaryotic ascospores replaces a heterokaryotic ascospore. Crosses with the Eight-spore mutant increase such replacement, and can generate asci with eight homokaryotic ascospores, either 4T + 4N from alternate segregation, or 4Dp + 4Df from adjacent-1 segregation. Crosses of some of the introgressed translocation strains with normal sequence N. tetrasperma produced more Dp than T or N homokaryotic progeny. We suggest this is due to an insufficiency for a presumptive ascospore maturation factor, which increases the chance that, in asci with > 4 viable ascospores, none properly mature. Since only four viable ascospores (Dp or [Dp + Df]) share the limiting factor following adjacent-1 segregation, whereas four to eight ascospores compete for it following alternate segregation, this would explain why Dp homokaryons outnumber T and N types, whereas the heterokaryons are not as affected. We believe that this novel form of transmission ratio distortion is caused by a Bateson-Dobzhansky-Muller Incompatibility (BDMI) triggered by an N. crassa gene in the N. tetrasperma background. Heterokaryons tend not to out-cross, and crosses of Dp strains are barren, thus the BDMI impedes interspecies gene flow.
Project description:Head blight, caused by Gibberella zeae, is a significant disease among cereal crops, including wheat, barley, and rice, due to contamination of grain with mycotoxins. G. zeae is spread by ascospores forcibly discharged from sexual fruiting bodies forming on crop residues. In this study, we characterized a novel gene, ROA, which is required for normal sexual development. Deletion of ROA (?roa) resulted in an abnormal size and shape of asci and ascospores but did not affect vegetative growth. The ?roa mutation triggered round ascospores and insufficient cell division after spore delimitation. The asci of the ?roa strain discharged fewer ascospores from the perithecia but achieved a greater dispersal distance than those of the wild-type strain. Turgor pressure within the asci was calculated through the analysis of osmolytes in the epiplasmic fluid. Deletion of the ROA gene appeared to increase turgor pressure in the mutant asci. The higher turgor pressure of the ?roa mutant asci and the mutant spore shape contributed to the longer distance dispersal. When the ?roa mutant was outcrossed with a ?mat1-2 mutant, a strain that contains a green fluorescence protein (GFP) marker in place of the MAT1-2 gene, unusual phenotypic segregation occurred. The ratio of GFP to non-GFP segregation was 1:1; however, all eight spores had the same shape. Taken together, the results of this study suggest that ROA plays multiple roles in maintaining the proper morphology and discharge of ascospores in G. zeae.
Project description:The sucrose nonfermenting 1 (SNF1) protein kinase of yeast plays a central role in the transcription of glucose-repressible genes in response to glucose starvation. In this study, we deleted an ortholog of SNF1 from Gibberella zeae to characterize its functions by using a gene replacement strategy. The mycelial growth of deletion mutants (DeltaGzSNF1) was reduced by 21 to 74% on diverse carbon sources. The virulence of DeltaGzSNF1 mutants on barley decreased, and the expression of genes encoding cell-wall-degrading enzymes was reduced. The most distinct phenotypic changes were in sexual and asexual development. DeltaGzSNF1 mutants produced 30% fewer perithecia, which matured more slowly, and asci that contained one to eight abnormally shaped ascospores. Mutants in which only the GzSNF1 catalytic domain was deleted had the same phenotype changes as the DeltaGzSNF1 strains, but the phenotype was less extreme in the mutants with the regulatory domain deleted. In outcrosses between the DeltaGzSNF1 mutants, each perithecium contained approximately 70% of the abnormal ascospores, and approximately 50% of the asci showed unexpected segregation patterns in a single locus tested. The asexual spores of the DeltaGzSNF1 mutants were shorter and had fewer septa than those of the wild-type strain. The germination and nucleation of both ascospores and conidia were delayed in DeltaGzSNF1 mutants in comparison with those of the wild-type strain. GzSNF1 expression and localization depended on the developmental stage of the fungus. These results suggest that GzSNF1 is critical for normal sexual and asexual development in addition to virulence and the utilization of alternative carbon sources.
Project description:The Podospora anserina cro1 gene was identified as a gene required for sexual sporulation. Crosses homozygous for the cro1-1 mutation yield fruiting bodies which produce few asci due to the formation of giant plurinucleate cells instead of dikaryotic cells after fertilization. This defect does not impair karyogamy, but meioses of the resultant polyploid nuclei are most often abortive. Cytological studies suggest that the primary defect of the mutant is its inability to form septa between the daughter nuclei after each mitosis, a step specific for normal dikaryotic cell divisions. The cro1-1 mutant would thus be unable to leave the syncytial vegetative state while abiding by the meiotic programme. cro1-1 also shows defects in ascospore germination and growth rate. GFP-tagging of the CRO1 protein reveals that it is a cytosolic protein mainly expressed at the beginning of the dikaryotic stage and at the time of ascospore maturation. The CRO1 protein exhibits significant similarity to the SHE4 protein, which is required for asymmetric mating-type switching in budding yeast cells. Thus, a gene involved in asymmetric cell divisions in a unicellular organism plays a key role at the transition between the syncytial (vegetative) state and the cellular (sexual) state in a filamentous fungus.
Project description:Based on molecular phylogenetic analyses of a multigene matrix of partial nuSSU-ITS-LSU rDNA, RPB1, RPB2 and TEF1 sequences and by morphological evidence, the genus Mycosphaerangium is shown to be the closest relative of Neomelanconium, and confirmed to be a member of the Cenangiaceae (Leotiomycetes). While Mycosphaerangium and Neomelanconium share many traits like similar conidia, conidiogenesis, asci and ascospores, their apothecia differ particularly in excipular features and are therefore recognized as distinct genera. Mycosphaerangium tiliae, described from North America, is excluded from the genus but shown to represent the sexual morph of the European Neomelanconium gelatosporum, and it is therefore synonymized with the latter. Based on morphology, Neomelanconium deightonii is assumed to be congeneric with Neomelanconium gelatosporum, and it is lectotypified. Dermatea tetraspora and Phaeangium magnisporum, the basionyms of Mycosphaerangium tetrasporum and M. magnisporum, respectively, are lectotypified as well, and for M. tetrasporum, the asexual morph is recorded for the first time. Mycosphaerangium quercinum sp. nov. is described as a new species from various Quercus hosts in Europe, where it is shown to be widely distributed. It morphologically and ecologically closely resembles the North American M. tetrasporum, but differs in paraphysis and ascospore morphology and by croziers at its ascus base. The three accepted species of Mycosphaerangium and the two of Neomelanconium are described and illustrated. Mycosphaerangium magnisporum, M. quercinum and M. tetrasporum are recorded to be constantly associated with species of Coryneum, indicating a fungicolous habit, but no evidence for fungal associations has been found in Neomelanconium deightonii and N. gelatosporum.
Project description:UNLABELLED: Species of Trichocomaceae occur commonly and are important to both industry and medicine. They are associated with food spoilage and mycotoxin production and can occur in the indoor environment, causing health hazards by the formation of β-glucans, mycotoxins and surface proteins. Some species are opportunistic pathogens, while others are exploited in biotechnology for the production of enzymes, antibiotics and other products. Penicillium belongs phylogenetically to Trichocomaceae and more than 250 species are currently accepted in this genus. In this study, we investigated the relationship of Penicillium to other genera of Trichocomaceae and studied in detail the phylogeny of the genus itself. In order to study these relationships, partial RPB1, RPB2 (RNA polymerase II genes), Tsr1 (putative ribosome biogenesis protein) and Cct8 (putative chaperonin complex component TCP-1) gene sequences were obtained. The Trichocomaceae are divided in three separate families: Aspergillaceae, Thermoascaceae and Trichocomaceae. The Aspergillaceae are characterised by the formation flask-shaped or cylindrical phialides, asci produced inside cleistothecia or surrounded by Hülle cells and mainly ascospores with a furrow or slit, while the Trichocomaceae are defined by the formation of lanceolate phialides, asci borne within a tuft or layer of loose hyphae and ascospores lacking a slit. Thermoascus and Paecilomyces, both members of Thermoascaceae, also form ascospores lacking a furrow or slit, but are differentiated from Trichocomaceae by the production of asci from croziers and their thermotolerant or thermophilic nature. Phylogenetic analysis shows that Penicillium is polyphyletic. The genus is re-defined and a monophyletic genus for both anamorphs and teleomorphs is created (Penicillium sensu stricto). The genera Thysanophora, Eupenicillium, Chromocleista, Hemicarpenteles and Torulomyces belong in Penicilliums. str. and new combinations for the species belonging to these genera are proposed. Analysis of Penicillium below genus rank revealed the presence of 25 clades. A new classification system including both anamorph and teleomorph species is proposed and these 25 clades are treated here as sections. An overview of species belonging to each section is presented. TAXONOMIC NOVELTIES: New sections, all in Penicillium: sect. Sclerotiora Houbraken & Samson, sect. Charlesia Houbraken & Samson, sect. Thysanophora Houbraken & Samson,sect. Ochrosalmonea Houbraken & Samson, sect. Cinnamopurpurea Houbraken & Samson, Fracta Houbraken & Samson, sect. Stolkia Houbraken & Samson, sect. Gracilenta Houbraken & Samson, sect. Citrina Houbraken & Samson, sect. Turbata Houbraken & Samson, sect. Paradoxa Houbraken & Samson, sect. Canescentia Houbraken & Samson. New combinations:Penicillium asymmetricum (Subramanian & Sudha) Houbraken & Samson, P. bovifimosum (Tuthill & Frisvad) Houbraken & Samson, P. glaucoalbidum (Desmazières) Houbraken & Samson, P. laeve (K. Ando & Manoch) Houbraken & Samson, P. longisporum (Kendrick) Houbraken & Samson, P. malachiteum (Yaguchi & Udagawa) Houbraken & Samson, P. ovatum (K. Ando & Nawawi) Houbraken & Samson, P. parviverrucosum (K. Ando & Pitt) Houbraken & Samson, P. saturniforme (Wang & Zhuang) Houbraken & Samson, P. taiwanense (Matsushima) Houbraken & Samson. New names:Penicillium coniferophilum Houbraken & Samson, P. hennebertii Houbraken & Samson, P. melanostipe Houbraken & Samson, P. porphyreum Houbraken & Samson.
Project description:Mitochondria and peroxisomes are organelles whose activity is intimately associated and that play fundamental roles in development. In the model fungus Podospora anserina, peroxisomes and mitochondria are required for different stages of sexual development, and evidence indicates that their activity in this process is interrelated. Additionally, sexual development involves precise regulation of peroxisome assembly and dynamics. Peroxisomes and mitochondria share the proteins mediating their division. The dynamin-related protein Dnm1 (Drp1) along with its membrane receptors, like Fis1, drives this process. Here we demonstrate that peroxisome and mitochondrial fission in P. anserina depends on FIS1 and DNM1. We show that FIS1 and DNM1 elimination affects the dynamics of both organelles throughout sexual development in a developmental stage-dependent manner. Moreover, we discovered that the segregation of peroxisomes, but not mitochondria, is affected upon elimination of FIS1 or DNM1 during the division of somatic hyphae and at two central stages of sexual development-the differentiation of meiocytes (asci) and of meiotic-derived spores (ascospores). Furthermore, we found that FIS1 and DNM1 elimination results in delayed karyogamy and defective ascospore differentiation. Our findings reveal that sexual development relies on complex remodeling of peroxisomes and mitochondria, which is driven by their common fission machinery.
Project description:The Podospora anserina ami1-1 mutant was identified as a male-sterile strain. Microconidia (which act as male gametes) form, but are anucleate. Paraphysae from the perithecium beaks are also anucleate when ami1-1 is used as the female partner in a cross. Furthermore, in crosses heterozygous for ami1-1, some crozier cells are uninucleate rather than binucleate. In addition to these nuclear migration defects, which occur at the transition between syncytial and cellular states, ami1-1 causes abnormal distribution of the nuclei in both mycelial filaments and asci. Finally, an ami1-1 strain bearing information for both mating types is unable to self-fertilize. The ami1 gene is an orthologue of the Aspergillus nidulans apsA gene, which controls nuclear positioning in filaments and during conidiogenesis (at the syncytial/cellular transition). The ApsA and AMI1 proteins display 42% identity and share structural features. The apsA gene complements some ami1-1 defects: it increases the percentage of nucleate microconidia and restores self-fertility in an ami1-1 mat+ (mat-) strain. The latter effect is puzzling, since in apsA null mutants sexual reproduction is quite normal. The functional differences between the two genes are discussed with respect to their possible history in these two fungi, which are very distant in terms of evolution.
Project description:Array-based comparative genome hybridization. H. jecorina undergoes a heterothallic reproductive cycle, and the mating yields asci with 16 linearly arranged ascospores. Here we have compared whole genome gene copy number in the F1 progeny. Overall design: We determined genome-wide gene copy number in the genomes of ascospores generated from diploid wild-type strain
Project description:Two new species of Geejayessia are introduced, based on materials collected from central China. Geejayessiaclavata sp. nov. is characterised by gregarious, red brownish to dark red, oval-subglobose to globose perithecia that are formed on a basal stroma; (4-7-)8-spored cylindrical asci; ellipsoidal or rarely broadly ellipsoidal, uniseptate, smooth or finely verruculose ascospores; clavate, aseptate microconidia and absence of macroconidia. Geejayessiasinica sp. nov. is characterised by red to bright red, pyriform, subglobose to globose, perithecia on a basal stroma, collapsing laterally when dry; subcylindrical to clavate asci with a rounded apex; ellipsoidal, uniseptate ascospores; and falcate, multiseptate macroconidia with an arcuate tip. Morphological distinctions of the new species from the related fungi are discussed. This is the first report of Geejayessia from Asia.