Papers in the Biological Sciences



Samantha Reese

Date of this Version



Reese, S.; Chelius, C.; Riekhof, W.; Marten, M.R.; Harris, S.D. Micafungin-Induced Cell Wall Damage Stimulates Morphological Changes Consistent with Microcycle Conidiation in Aspergillus nidulans. J. Fungi 2021, 7, 525. 10.3390/jof7070525




Fungal cell wall receptors relay messages about the state of the cell wall to the nucleus through the Cell Wall Integrity Signaling (CWIS) pathway. The ultimate role of the CWIS pathway is to coordinate repair of cell wall damage and to restore normal hyphal growth. Echinocandins such as micafungin represent a class of antifungals that trigger cell wall damage by affecting synthesis of β-glucans. To obtain a better understanding of the dynamics of the CWIS response and its multiple effects, we have coupled dynamic transcriptome analysis with morphological studies of Aspergillus nidulans hyphae in responds to micafungin. Our results reveal that expression of the master regulator of asexual development, BrlA, is induced by micafungin exposure. Further study showed that micafungin elicits morphological changes consistent with microcycle conidiation and that this effect is abolished in the absence of MpkA. Our results suggest that microcycle conidiation may be a general response to cell wall perturbation which in some cases would enable fungi to tolerate or survive otherwise lethal damage.

Included in

Biology Commons