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, 19 (1), 11-6

Functional Analysis of MCNA, a Gene Encoding a Catalytic Subunit of Calcineurin, in the Rice Blast Fungus Magnaporthe Oryzae

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  • PMID: 19190403

Functional Analysis of MCNA, a Gene Encoding a Catalytic Subunit of Calcineurin, in the Rice Blast Fungus Magnaporthe Oryzae

Jin Hee Choi et al. J Microbiol Biotechnol.

Abstract

Magnaporthe oryzae, the causal agent of rice blast, forms a specialized infection structure, called an appressorium, which is crucial for penetration and infection of the host plant. Pharmacological data suggest that calcium/calmodulin-dependent signaling is involved in appressorium formation in this fungus. To understand the role of the calcium/ calmodulin-activated protein phosphatase on appressorium formation at the molecular level, MCNA, a gene encoding the catalytic subunit of calcineurin, was functionally characterized in M. oryzae. Transformants expressing sense/antisense RNA of MCNA exhibited significant reductions in mycelial growth, conidiation, appressorium formation, and pathogenicity. cDNA of MCNA functionally complemented a calcineurin disruptant strain (cmp1::LEU2 cmp2::HIS3) of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. These data suggest that calcineurin A plays important roles in signal transduction pathways involved in the infection-related morphogenesis and pathogenicity of M. oryzae.

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