Peer-Reviewed Journal Details
Mandatory Fields
Power, T,Ortoneda, M,Morrissey, JP,Dobson, ADW;
International Microbiology
Differential expression of genes involved in iron metabolism in Aspergillus fumigatus
Optional Fields
Aspergillus fumigatus iron metabolism siderophore real-time PCR GATA factor
The ability of fungi to survive in many environments is linked to their capacity to acquire essential nutrients. Iron is generally complexed and available in very limited amounts. Like bacteria, fungi have evolved highly specific systems for iron acquisition. Production and uptake of iron-chelating siderophores has been shown to be important for certain human bacterial pathogens, as well as in fungal pathogens such as Cryptococcus neoformans and Fusarium graminearum. This system also enables the opportunistic fungal pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus to infect and subsequently colonize the human lung. In this study, advantage was taken of genome sequence data available for both Aspergillus nidulans and A.fumigatus either to partially clone or to design PCR primers for 10 genes putatively involved in siderophore biosynthesis or uptake in A. fumigatus. The expression of these genes was then monitored by semi-quantitative and quantitative real-time PCR over a range of iron concentrations. As expected, the putative biosynthetic genes sidA, sidC and sidD were all strongly up-regulated under iron starvation conditions, although the variable degree of induction indicates complex regulation by a number of transcriptional factors, including the GATA family protein SreA. In contrast, the gene sidE shows no iron-regulation, suggesting that SidE may not be involved in siderophore biosynthesis. The characterisation of the expression patterns of this subset of genes in the iron regulon facilitates further studies into the importance of iron acquisition for pathogenesis of A. fumigatus.
Grant Details