Honors Program


Date of this Version

Spring 4-16-2018

Document Type



Appeah, Harriet. Characterizing the Role of Glutaminolysis in Magnaporthe oryzae: Links Between Carbon Metabolism and Pathogenicity. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. 2018.


Copyright Harriet Appeah 2018


Glutaminolysis is the metabolic process by which glutamine is converted into substrates required for the tricarboxylic acid (TCA) cycle. An important enzyme in this cycle is glutamate synthase (Glt); through transamination, glutamine is converted into glutamate, which can then enter the TCA cycle. Glutaminolysis may be necessary to the pathogenicity of Magnaporthe oryzae, an ascomycete fungus that is the causative agent of rice blast. The elimination of GLT in the fungus caused reduced growth in the presence of glutamine and reduced pathogenicity characterized by the limited lesion formation and inhibition of appressoria penetration. The results of the study support the hypothesis that glutaminolysis plays a role in the virulence of M. oryzae, Understanding the plant pathogen interactions of Magnaporthe oryzae and rice could also have far-reaching implications in other biological disciplines such as cancer research.