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Free Content RcoA has pleiotropic effects on Aspergillus nidulans cellular development

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Aspergillus nidulans rcoA encodes a member of the WD repeat family of proteins. The RcoA protein shares sequence similarity with other members of this protein family, including the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Tup1p and Neurospora crassa RCO1. Tup1p is involved in negative regulation of an array of functions including carbon catabolite repression. RCO1 functions in regulating pleiotropic developmental processes, but not carbon catabolite repression. In A. nidulans, deletion of rcoArcoA), a recessive mutation, resulted in gross defects in vegetative growth, asexual spore production and sterigmatocystin (ST) biosynthesis. Expression of the asexual and ST pathway-specific regulatory genes, brlA and aflR, respectively, but not the signal transduction genes (i.e. flbA, fluG or fadA) regulating brlA and aflR expression was delayed (brlA) or eliminated (aflR) in a ΔrcoA strain. Overexpression of aflR in a ΔrcoA strain could not rescue normal expression of downstream targets of AflR. CreA-dependent carbon catabolite repression of starch and ethanol utilization was only weakly affected in a ΔrcoA strain. The strong role of RcoA in development, vegetative growth and ST production, compared with a relatively weak role in carbon catabolite repression, is similar to the role of RCO1 in N. crassa.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Department of Plant Pathology and Microbiology, TAMUS 2132, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843-2132, USA. 2: Department of Molecular Biosciences, University of Adelaide, Adelaide, 5005, Australia. 3: Section Microbial Biochemistry, Institute of Biochemical Technology and Microbiology, TU Wien, Getreidemarkt 9-172.5, A-1060 Wien, Austria.

Publication date: March 1, 2001

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