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PloS one

Protein kinase C overexpression suppresses calcineurin-associated defects in Aspergillus nidulans and is involved in mitochondrial function.


PMID 25153325

Abstract

In filamentous fungi, intracellular signaling pathways which are mediated by changing calcium levels and/or by activated protein kinase C (Pkc), control fungal adaptation to external stimuli. A rise in intracellular Ca2+ levels activates calcineurin subunit A (CnaA), which regulates cellular calcium homeostasis among other processes. Pkc is primarily involved in maintaining cell wall integrity (CWI) in response to different environmental stresses. Cross-talk between the Ca2+ and Pkc-mediated pathways has mainly been described in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and in a few other filamentous fungi. The presented study describes a genetic interaction between CnaA and PkcA in the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans. Overexpression of pkcA partially rescues the phenotypes caused by a cnaA deletion. Furthermore, CnaA appears to affect the regulation of a mitogen-activated kinase, MpkA, involved in the CWI pathway. Reversely, PkcA is involved in controlling intracellular calcium homeostasis, as was confirmed by microarray analysis. Furthermore, overexpression of pkcA in a cnaA deletion background restores mitochondrial number and function. In conclusion, PkcA and CnaA-mediated signaling appear to share common targets, one of which appears to be MpkA of the CWI pathway. Both pathways also regulate components involved in mitochondrial biogenesis and function. This study describes targets for PkcA and CnaA-signaling pathways in an A. nidulans and identifies a novel interaction of both pathways in the regulation of cellular respiration.