cAMP alteration of growth rate of Aspergillus fumigatus and Aspergillus niger is carbon-source dependent


Oliver BG, Panepinto JC, Askew DS, Rhodes JC

Date: 11 November 2005


cAMP signalling has been shown to be essential for normal growth, morphology and virulence in fungal pathogens of both plants and animals. The effects of exogenous cAMP on the growth of the opportunistic pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus were compared to those of Aspergillus niger, which has previously been demonstrated to respond to extracellular cAMP. Both cAMP and phosphodiesterase inhibitors markedly reduced the radial growth rate of A. niger after 48 h on minimal medium with glucose as the carbon source, whereas the growth of A. fumigatus was not affected by cAMP. However, when glycerol, which does not initiate carbon catabolite repression, was used as a carbon source, cAMP inhibited the radial growth rate of only A. fumigatus (P<0.05). The addition of cAMP to glycerol-minimal medium resulted in a fourfold increase in protein kinase A activity in A. fumigatus cell extracts when compared with pre-treatment samples. The protein kinase A activity in A. fumigatus cell extracts from cultures grown in glucose did not change significantly with the addition of cAMP. These studies demonstrate that although the growth rates of both A. fumigatus and A. niger are sensitive to the addition of exogenous cAMP, the response of each organism is distinct and dependent on the carbon source used.

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