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A transcription factor, MrMsn2, in the dimorphic fungus Metarhizium rileyi is essential for dimorphism transition, aggravated pigmentation, conidiation and microsclerotia formation.


ABSTRACT: Microsclerotia (MS) are pseudoparenchymatous aggregations of hyphae of fungi that can be induced in liquid culture for biocontrol applications. Previously, we determined that the high-osmolarity glycerol (HOG) signalling pathway was involved in regulating MS development in the dimorphic insect pathogen Metarhizium rileyi. To further investigate the mechanisms by which the signalling pathway is regulated, we characterized the transcriptional factor MrMsn2, a homologue of the yeast C2 H2 transcriptional factor Msn2, which is predicted to function downstream of the HOG pathway in M. rileyi. Compared with wild-type and complemented strains, disruption of MrMsn2 increased the yeast-to-hypha transition rate, enhanced conidiation capacity and aggravated pigmentation in M. rileyi. The ?MrMsn2 mutants were sensitive to stress, produced morphologically abnormal clones and had significantly reduced MS formation and decreased virulence levels. Digital expression profiling revealed that genes involved in antioxidation, pigment biosynthesis and ion transport and storage were regulated by MrMsn2 during conidia and MS development. Taken together, our findings confirm that MrMsn2 controlled the yeast-to-hypha transition, conidia and MS formation, and virulence.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC6196401 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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