Journal article

Mutations to LmIFRD affect cell wall integrity, development and pathogenicity of the ascomycete Leptosphaeria maculans

Angela P Van de Wouw, Filomena A Pettolino, Barbara J Howlett, Candace E Elliott

Fungal Genetics and Biology | ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE | Published : 2009


Maintaining cell wall integrity is essential for fungal growth and development. We describe two mutants with altered expression of a gene, LmIFRD, from the ascomycete Leptosphaeria maculans. Truncation of the LmIFRD transcript in a T-DNA insertional mutant led to slower germination, less sporulation and loss-of-pathogenicity towards Brassica napus, whereas silencing of the LmIFRD transcript led to increased germination, sporulation and earlier infection. The increased tolerance to cell wall lysing enzymes and cell wall-disrupting compounds of the T-DNA mutant contrasts with decreased tolerance of the silenced mutant and suggests altered cell wall integrity and accessibility to 1,3-linked glu..

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Funding Acknowledgements

This work was supported by the Grains Research and Development Corporation, Australia and the Australian Research Council. We thank Thierry Rouxel and Marie-Helene Balesdent, INRA and Patrick Wincker, Genoscope, and Joelle Anselem, URGI, France for access to the L. maculans sequence. We also thank Dr. Sarah Wilson, University of Melbourne, for help with iodine staining of germinating spores.