Visualization of Vacuoles in Aspergillus Oryzae by Expression of CPY-EGFP

Fungal Genet Biol. 2002 Oct;37(1):29-38. doi: 10.1016/s1087-1845(02)00033-6.


Vacuolar carboxypeptidase Y (CPY) from Aspergillus nidulans was used to construct a CPY-EGFP fusion protein and expressed in A. oryzae to study vacuolar morphology and functions in A. oryzae. While the fluorescence of EGFP was barely detectable in A. oryzae expressing CPY-EGFP grown under normal conditions at pH 5-6, the increase in pH of the growth medium towards alkalinity restored the fluorescence. In accordance with such an observation, the fluorescence of CPY-EGFP fusion protein in cell extract decreased in acidic pH condition, concomitant with lowered content of EGFP detected in A. oryzae grown under acidic pH conditions. The pH sensitivity of EGFP fluorescence and enhanced degradation of proteins in vacuoles under acidic pH conditions are thus proposed to result in the reduction of fluorescence in A. oryzae. Further, visualization of vacuoles revealed the presence of peculiar ring- or tube-like structures as distinct from normal spherical-shaped vacuoles.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Aspergillus oryzae / cytology*
  • Aspergillus oryzae / enzymology
  • Aspergillus oryzae / genetics
  • Carboxypeptidases / biosynthesis*
  • Carboxypeptidases / genetics
  • Cathepsin A
  • Gene Expression
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Luminescent Proteins / genetics
  • Microscopy, Fluorescence
  • Plasmids / genetics
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins / genetics
  • Vacuoles / physiology*


  • Luminescent Proteins
  • Recombinant Fusion Proteins
  • Green Fluorescent Proteins
  • Carboxypeptidases
  • Cathepsin A