Iron starvation leads to increased expression of Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase in Aspergillus

FEBS Lett. 2000 Nov 24;485(2-3):113-6. doi: 10.1016/s0014-5793(00)02206-7.


In a search for iron-regulated proteins of Aspergillus nidulans and Aspergillus fumigatus a 16-kDa protein was identified which is about 5-fold upregulated during iron starvation in both species and which can be approximately 500-fold enriched by simple one-step chromatography on Amberlite XAD-16 resin. N-terminal protein sequence analysis and cloning of the respective A. nidulans cDNA identified this protein as a Cu/Zn-superoxide dismutase (SODA). Northern analysis revealed that upregulation of sodA expression occurs at the level of transcript accumulation. This seems to be a specific low iron response and not a general starvation answer since sodA transcript levels do not respond to carbon or nitrogen starvation. In contrast, copper depletion leads to transcriptional downregulation of sodA. Furthermore, sodA expression was found still to be subject to iron regulation in an A. nidulans mutant lacking SREA, a regulator of iron homeostasis, indicating that sodA expression is regulated by an SREA-independent mechanism. The data presented suggest that SODA plays a protective role under iron deplete conditions.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Aspergillus fumigatus / enzymology*
  • Aspergillus nidulans / enzymology*
  • Bacterial Proteins / chemistry
  • Bacterial Proteins / genetics
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Fungal Proteins*
  • GATA Transcription Factors
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic*
  • Iron / administration & dosage*
  • Iron / physiology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Repressor Proteins / genetics
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Superoxide Dismutase / chemistry
  • Superoxide Dismutase / genetics*


  • Bacterial Proteins
  • Fungal Proteins
  • GATA Transcription Factors
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Repressor Proteins
  • SREA protein, Aspergillus nidulans
  • Iron
  • SodA protein, Bacteria
  • Superoxide Dismutase