Comparative Phenotypic Analysis of the Major Fungal Pathogens Candida Parapsilosis and Candida Albicans

PLoS Pathog. 2014 Sep 18;10(9):e1004365. doi: 10.1371/journal.ppat.1004365. eCollection 2014 Sep.

Abstract

Candida parapsilosis and Candida albicans are human fungal pathogens that belong to the CTG clade in the Saccharomycotina. In contrast to C. albicans, relatively little is known about the virulence properties of C. parapsilosis, a pathogen particularly associated with infections of premature neonates. We describe here the construction of C. parapsilosis strains carrying double allele deletions of 100 transcription factors, protein kinases and species-specific genes. Two independent deletions were constructed for each target gene. Growth in >40 conditions was tested, including carbon source, temperature, and the presence of antifungal drugs. The phenotypes were compared to C. albicans strains with deletions of orthologous transcription factors. We found that many phenotypes are shared between the two species, such as the role of Upc2 as a regulator of azole resistance, and of CAP1 in the oxidative stress response. Others are unique to one species. For example, Cph2 plays a role in the hypoxic response in C. parapsilosis but not in C. albicans. We found extensive divergence between the biofilm regulators of the two species. We identified seven transcription factors and one protein kinase that are required for biofilm development in C. parapsilosis. Only three (Efg1, Bcr1 and Ace2) have similar effects on C. albicans biofilms, whereas Cph2, Czf1, Gzf3 and Ume6 have major roles in C. parapsilosis only. Two transcription factors (Brg1 and Tec1) with well-characterized roles in biofilm formation in C. albicans do not have the same function in C. parapsilosis. We also compared the transcription profile of C. parapsilosis and C. albicans biofilms. Our analysis suggests the processes shared between the two species are predominantly metabolic, and that Cph2 and Bcr1 are major biofilm regulators in C. parapsilosis.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Biofilms / growth & development*
  • Biomarkers / analysis*
  • Candida / classification*
  • Candida / genetics*
  • Candida / growth & development
  • Candidiasis / genetics*
  • Candidiasis / microbiology
  • Fungal Proteins / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Humans
  • Oligonucleotide Array Sequence Analysis
  • Phenotype
  • RNA, Fungal / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Signal Transduction
  • Species Specificity

Substances

  • Biomarkers
  • Fungal Proteins
  • RNA, Fungal
  • RNA, Messenger

Associated data

  • GEO/GSE57451