How nutritional status signalling coordinates metabolism and lignocellulolytic enzyme secretion

Fungal Genet Biol. 2014 Nov;72:48-63. doi: 10.1016/j.fgb.2014.06.012. Epub 2014 Jul 8.


The utilisation of lignocellulosic plant biomass as an abundant, renewable feedstock for green chemistries and biofuel production is inhibited by its recalcitrant nature. In the environment, lignocellulolytic fungi are naturally capable of breaking down plant biomass into utilisable saccharides. Nonetheless, within the industrial context, inefficiencies in the production of lignocellulolytic enzymes impede the implementation of green technologies. One of the primary causes of such inefficiencies is the tight transcriptional control of lignocellulolytic enzymes via carbon catabolite repression. Fungi coordinate metabolism, protein biosynthesis and secretion with cellular energetic status through the detection of intra- and extra-cellular nutritional signals. An enhanced understanding of the signals and signalling pathways involved in regulating the transcription, translation and secretion of lignocellulolytic enzymes is therefore of great biotechnological interest. This comparative review describes how nutrient sensing pathways regulate carbon catabolite repression, metabolism and the utilisation of alternative carbon sources in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and ascomycete fungi.

Keywords: Ascomycete fungi; Carbon catabolite repression; Carbon starvation; Lignocellulolytic enzymes; Protein secretion; Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Ascomycota / enzymology*
  • Ascomycota / genetics
  • Ascomycota / metabolism*
  • Biomass*
  • Cellulases / genetics
  • Cellulases / metabolism*
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Fungal
  • Plants / metabolism*
  • Plants / microbiology


  • Cellulases