Nacreous layers of pearl oyster are one of the major functional biominerals. By participating in organic compound-crystal interactions, they assemble into consecutive mineral lamellae-like photonic crystals. Their biomineralization mechanisms are controlled by macromolecules; however, they are largely unknown. Here, we report two novel lectins termed PPL2A and PPL2B, which were isolated from the mantle and the secreted fluid of Pteria penguin oyster. PPL2A is a hetero-dimer composed of ? and ? subunits, and PPL2B is a homo-dimer of ? subunit, all of which surprisingly shared sequence homology with the jacalin-related plant lectin. On the basis of knockdown experiments at the larval stage, the identification of PPLs in the shell matrix, and in vitro CaCO3 crystallization analysis, we conclude that two novel jacalin-related lectins participate in the biomineralization of P. penguin nacre as matrix proteins. Furthermore, it was found that trehalose, which is specific recognizing carbohydrates for PPL2A and is abundant in the secreted fluid of P. penguin mantle, functions as a regulatory factor for biomineralization via PPL2A. These observations highlight the unique functions, diversity and molecular evolution of this lectin family involved in the mollusk shell formation.
A previous study identified MoRgs1 as an RGS protein that negative regulates G-protein signaling to control developmental processes such as conidiation and appressorium formation in Magnaporthe oryzae. Here, we characterized additional seven RGS and RGS-like proteins (MoRgs2 through MoRgs8). We found that MoRgs1 and MoRgs4 positively regulate surface hydrophobicity, conidiation, and mating. Indifference to MoRgs1, MoRgs4 has a role in regulating laccase and peroxidase activities. MoRgs1, MoRgs2, MoRgs3, MoRgs4, MoRgs6, and MoRgs7 are important for germ tube growth and appressorium formation. Interestingly, MoRgs7 and MoRgs8 exhibit a unique domain structure in which the RGS domain is linked to a seven-transmembrane motif, a hallmark of G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs). We have also shown that MoRgs1 regulates mating through negative regulation of G? MoMagB and is involved in the maintenance of cell wall integrity. While all proteins appear to be involved in the control of intracellular cAMP levels, only MoRgs1, MoRgs3, MoRgs4, and MoRgs7 are required for full virulence. Taking together, in addition to MoRgs1 functions as a prominent RGS protein in M. oryzae, MoRgs4 and other RGS and RGS-like proteins are also involved in a complex process governing asexual/sexual development, appressorium formation, and pathogenicity.
Cyclic AMP (cAMP) signaling plays an important role in regulating multiple cellular responses, such as growth, morphogenesis, and/or pathogenicity of eukaryotic organisms such as fungi. As a second messenger, cAMP is important in the activation of downstream effector molecules. The balance of intracellular cAMP levels depends on biosynthesis by adenylyl cyclases (ACs) and hydrolysis by cAMP phosphodiesterases (PDEases). The rice blast fungus Magnaporthe oryzae contains a high-affinity (PdeH/Pde2) and a low-affinity (PdeL/Pde1) PDEases, and a previous study showed that PdeH has a major role in asexual differentiation and pathogenicity. Here, we show that PdeL is required for asexual development and conidial morphology, and it also plays a minor role in regulating cAMP signaling. This is in contrast to PdeH whose mutation resulted in major defects in conidial morphology, cell wall integrity, and surface hydrophobicity, as well as a significant reduction in pathogenicity. Consistent with both PdeH and PdeL functioning in cAMP signaling, disruption of PDEH only partially rescued the mutant phenotype of ?magB and ?pka1. Further studies suggest that PdeH might function through a feedback mechanism to regulate the expression of pathogenicity factor Mpg1 during surface hydrophobicity and pathogenic development. Moreover, microarray data revealed new insights into the underlying cAMP regulatory mechanisms that may help to identify potential pathogenicity factors for the development of new disease management strategies.
A two-component signal transduction system is a common mechanism for environmental sensing in bacteria. The functions of the two-component molecules have been also well characterized in the lower eukaryotic fungi in recent years. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the histidine kinase Sln1p is a major component of the two-component signaling pathways and a key regulator of the osmolarity response. To determine the function of MoSLN1, a Sln1 homolog of Magnaporthe oryzae, we cloned the MoSLN1 gene and generated specific mutants using gene knock-out strategy. Disruption of MoSLN1 resulted in hypersensitivity to various stresses, reduced sensitivity to cell wall perturbing agent Calcofluor white, and loss of pathogenicity, mainly due to a penetration defect. Additionally, we showed that MoSLN1 is involved in oxidative signaling through modulation of intra- and extracellular peroxidase activities. These results indicate that MoSLN1 functions as a pathogenicity factor that plays a role in responses to osmotic stress, the cell wall integrity, and the activity of peroxidases.
Calcineurin, a conserved Ca(2+)/calmodulin-regulated protein phosphatase, is an important mediator of calcium-dependent signal transduction pathways in many organisms. In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, calcineurin positively regulates transcription in response to stress by dephosphorylating the transcription factor Crz1p. Here we describe the identification, cloning, and function of the gene encoding the Magnaporthe grisea CRZ1 homolog, MgCRZ1. Specifically, we demonstrated that MgCRZ1 partially complemented a yeast Deltacrz1 mutant and exhibited Ca(2+) and calcineurin activity-dependent cellular localization. Targeted disruption of MgCRZ1 resulted in hypersensitivity to Ca(2+). Compared with the wild-type Guy11 strain, the Deltacrz1 mutants formed significantly reduced numbers of conidia and a large portion of abnormal appressoria (>50%) that exhibited little or no melanin production. Lipid metabolism was delayed, and the level of turgor pressure within the appressoria declined, thereby notably attenuating mutant pathogenicity. We conclude that MgCRZ1 is essential for growth, development, and full virulence of M. grisea.
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