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Toxins 2018, 10(3), 117; https://doi.org/10.3390/toxins10030117

G Protein α Subunit GpaB is Required for Asexual Development, Aflatoxin Biosynthesis and Pathogenicity by Regulating cAMP Signaling in Aspergillus flavus

1
Fujian Key Laboratory of Pathogenic Fungi and Mycotoxins, Key Laboratory of Biopesticide and Chemical Biology of Education Ministry, and School of Life Sciences, Fujian Agriculture and Forestry University, Fuzhou 350002, China
2
Xiamen Anjie Medical Data Technology Co. Ltd., Xiamen 361115, China
These authors contributed to this work equally.
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 5 February 2018 / Revised: 5 March 2018 / Accepted: 7 March 2018 / Published: 10 March 2018
(This article belongs to the Collection Aflatoxins)
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Abstract

The heterotrimeric G proteins are critical for signal transduction and function in numerous biological processes including vegetative growth, asexual development and fungal virulence in fungi. Here, we identified four G protein alpha subunits (GanA, GpaB, FadA and GaoC) in the notorious Aflatoxin-producing fungus Aspergillus flavus. GanA, GpaB and FadA have homologues in other fungal species, while GaoC is a novel one. Here, we showed that the loss function of gpaB displayed a defect in conidiophore formation and considerably reduced expression levels of conidia-specific genes brlA and abaA. A decreased viability of cell wall integrity stress and oxidative stress were also found in the ∆gpaB mutant. More importantly, aflatoxin (AF) biosynthesis and infection on crop seeds were severely impaired in the gpaB-deficient mutant. Further analyses demonstrated that the intracellular cAMP levels significantly reduced in the gpaB-deficient mutant compared to wildtype strains. Additionally, an alteration of PKA activities in the ∆gpaB mutant was also found. Overall, our results indicated that GpaB played diverse roles in asexual sporulation, AF biosynthesis and virulence by regulating cAMP signaling in Aspergillus flavus. View Full-Text
Keywords: G protein; sclerotia; fungal virulence; cAMP G protein; sclerotia; fungal virulence; cAMP
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Liu, Y.; Yang, K.; Qin, Q.; Lin, G.; Hu, T.; Xu, Z.; Wang, S. G Protein α Subunit GpaB is Required for Asexual Development, Aflatoxin Biosynthesis and Pathogenicity by Regulating cAMP Signaling in Aspergillus flavus. Toxins 2018, 10, 117.

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