Effect of low shear modeled microgravity on phenotypic and central chitin metabolism in the filamentous fungi Aspergillus niger and Penicillium chrysogenum

Yesupatham Sathishkumar, Natarajan Velmurugan, Hyun Mi Lee, Kalyanaraman Rajagopal, Chan Ki Im, Yang Soo Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Scopus citations

Abstract

Phenotypic and genotypic changes in Aspergillus niger and Penicillium chrysogenum, spore forming filamentous fungi, with respect to central chitin metabolism were studied under low shear modeled microgravity, normal gravity and static conditions. Low shear modeled microgravity (LSMMG) response showed a similar spore germination rate with normal gravity and static conditions. Interestingly, high ratio of multiple germ tube formation of A. niger in LSMMG condition was observed. Confocal laser scanning microscopy images of calcofluor flurophore stained A. niger and P. chrysogenum showed no significant variations between different conditions tested. Transmission electron microscopy images revealed number of mitochondria increased in P. chrysogenum in low shear modeled microgravity condition but no stress related-woronin bodies in fungal hyphae were observed. To gain additional insight into the cell wall integrity under different conditions, transcription level of a key gene involved in cell wall integrity gfaA, encoding the glutamine: fructose-6-phosphate amidotransferase enzyme, was evaluated using qRT-PCR. The transcription level showed no variation among different conditions. Overall, the results collectively indicate that the LSMMG has shown no significant stress on spore germination, mycelial growth, cell wall integrity of potentially pathogenic fungi, A. niger and P. chrysogenum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)197-209
Number of pages13
JournalAntonie van Leeuwenhoek, International Journal of General and Molecular Microbiology
Volume106
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • Aspergillus niger
  • Central chitin metabolism
  • Low shear modeled microgravity (LSMMG)
  • Penicillium chrysogenum
  • Phenotypic characteristics
  • gfaA gene

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