Fungal Physiology

Utrecht, Netherlands

Fungal Physiology

Utrecht, Netherlands

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Zhou M.,Fungal Physiology | Aguilar-Pontes M.V.,Fungal Physiology | Tsang A.,Center for Structural and Functional GenomicsConcordia UniversityMontreal 1R6 Canada
Environmental Microbiology | Year: 2017

The ability to obtain carbon and energy is a major requirement to exist in any environment. For several ascomycete fungi, (post-)genomic analyses have shown that species that occupy a large variety of habitats possess a diverse enzymatic machinery, while species with a specific habitat have a more focused enzyme repertoire that is well-adapted to the prevailing substrate. White-rot basidiomycete fungi also live in a specific habitat, as they are found exclusively in wood. In this study, we evaluated how well the enzymatic machinery of the white-rot fungus Dichomitus squalens is tailored to degrade its natural wood substrate. The transcriptome and exoproteome of D. squalens were analyzed after cultivation on two natural substrates, aspen and spruce wood, and two non-woody substrates, wheat bran and cotton seed hulls. D. squalens produced ligninolytic enzymes mainly at the early time point of the wood cultures, indicating the need to degrade lignin to get access to wood polysaccharides. Surprisingly, the response of the fungus to the non-woody polysaccharides was nearly as good a match to the substrate composition as observed for the wood polysaccharides. This indicates that D. squalens has preserved its ability to efficiently degrade plant biomass types not present in its natural habitat. © 2017 Society for Applied Microbiology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Tramontina R.,West Parana State University | Robl D.,Fungal Physiology | Maitan-Alfenas G.P.,Fungal Physiology | de Vries R.P.,University Utrecht
Biotechnology Journal | Year: 2016

Efficient polysaccharide degradation depends on interaction between enzymes acting on the main chain and the side chains. Previous studies demonstrated cooperation between several enzymes, but not all enzyme combinations have been explored. A better understanding of enzyme cooperation would enable the design of better enzyme mixtures, optimally profiting from synergistic effects. In this study, we analyzed the cooperation of several enzymes involved in the degradation of xylan, glucan, xyloglucan and crude plant biomass from Aspergillus nidulans by single and combined incubations with their polymeric substrate. Positive effects were observed between most enzymes, although not always to the same extent. Moreover, the tailor made cocktails formulated in this study resulted in efficient release of glucose from plant biomass. This study also serves as an example for the complex cooperation that occurs between enzymes in plant biomass saccharification and how expression in easily-accessible hosts, such as Pichia pastoris, can help in revealing these effects. © 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.


Battaglia E.,University Utrecht | Benoit I.,University Utrecht | van den Brink J.,Fungal Physiology | Wiebenga A.,Fungal Physiology | And 3 more authors.
BMC Genomics | Year: 2011

Background: Rhizopus oryzae is a zygomycete filamentous fungus, well-known as a saprobe ubiquitous in soil and as a pathogenic/spoilage fungus, causing Rhizopus rot and mucomycoses.Results: Carbohydrate Active enzyme (CAZy) annotation of the R. oryzae identified, in contrast to other filamentous fungi, a low number of glycoside hydrolases (GHs) and a high number of glycosyl transferases (GTs) and carbohydrate esterases (CEs). A detailed analysis of CAZy families, supported by growth data, demonstrates highly specialized plant and fungal cell wall degrading abilities distinct from ascomycetes and basidiomycetes. The specific genomic and growth features for degradation of easily digestible plant cell wall mono- and polysaccharides (starch, galactomannan, unbranched pectin, hexose sugars), chitin, chitosan, β-1,3-glucan and fungal cell wall fractions suggest specific adaptations of R. oryzae to its environment.Conclusions: CAZy analyses of the genome of the zygomycete fungus R. oryzae and comparison to ascomycetes and basidiomycete species revealed how evolution has shaped its genetic content with respect to carbohydrate degradation, after divergence from the Ascomycota and Basidiomycota. © 2011 Battaglia et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.


Todd R.B.,Kansas State University | Zhou M.,Fungal Physiology | Ohm R.A.,University Utrecht | Ohm R.A.,U.S. Department of Energy | And 5 more authors.
BMC Genomics | Year: 2014

Background: Gene regulation underlies fungal physiology and therefore is a major factor in fungal biodiversity. Analysis of genome sequences has revealed a large number of putative transcription factors in most fungal genomes. The presence of fungal orthologs for individual regulators has been analysed and appears to be highly variable with some regulators widely conserved and others showing narrow distribution. Although genome-scale transcription factor surveys have been performed before, no global study into the prevalence of specific regulators across the fungal kingdom has been presented. Results: In this study we have analysed the number of members for 37 regulator classes in 77 ascomycete and 31 basidiomycete fungal genomes and revealed significant differences between ascomycetes and basidiomycetes. In addition, we determined the presence of 64 regulators characterised in ascomycetes across these 108 genomes. This demonstrated that overall the highest presence of orthologs is in the filamentous ascomycetes. A significant number of regulators lacked orthologs in the ascomycete yeasts and the basidiomycetes. Conversely, of seven basidiomycete regulators included in the study, only one had orthologs in ascomycetes. Conclusions: This study demonstrates a significant difference in the regulatory repertoire of ascomycete and basidiomycete fungi, at the level of both regulator class and individual regulator. This suggests that the current regulatory systems of these fungi have been mainly developed after the two phyla diverged. Most regulators detected in both phyla are involved in central functions of fungal physiology and therefore were likely already present in the ancestor of the two phyla. © 2014 Todd et al.; licensee BioMed Central Ltd.

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