Cell wall glycans and soluble factors determine the interactions between the hyphae of Candida albicans and Pseudomonas aeruginosa

FEMS Microbiol Lett. 2008 Oct;287(1):48-55. doi: 10.1111/j.1574-6968.2008.01301.x. Epub 2008 Aug 2.


The fungus, Candida albicans, and the bacterium, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, are opportunistic human pathogens that have been coisolated from diverse body sites. Pseudomonas aeruginosa suppresses C. albicans proliferation in vitro and potentially in vivo but it is the C. albicans hyphae that are killed while yeast cells are not. We show that hyphal killing involves both contact-mediated and soluble factors. Bacterial culture filtrates contained heat-labile soluble factors that killed C. albicans hyphae. In cocultures, localized points of hyphal lysis were observed, suggesting that adhesion and subsequent bacteria-mediated cell wall lysis is involved in the killing of C. albicans hyphae. The glycosylation status of the C. albicans cell wall affected the rate of contact-dependent killing because mutants with severely truncated O-linked, but not N-linked, glycans were hypersensitive to Pseudomonas-mediated killing. Deletion of HWP1, ALS3 or HYR1, which encode major hypha-associated cell wall proteins, had no effect on fungal susceptibility.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Candida albicans / genetics
  • Candida albicans / growth & development
  • Candida albicans / pathogenicity
  • Candida albicans / physiology*
  • Cell Wall / genetics
  • Cell Wall / metabolism*
  • Culture Media, Conditioned
  • Glycosylation
  • Hyphae / cytology
  • Hyphae / genetics
  • Hyphae / metabolism
  • Hyphae / physiology*
  • Polysaccharides / genetics
  • Polysaccharides / metabolism*
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / genetics
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / growth & development
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / pathogenicity
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / physiology*


  • Culture Media, Conditioned
  • Polysaccharides