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Glucose and HODEs regulate Aspergillus ochraceus quorum sensing through the GprC-AcyA pathway

Published date

May 29, 2024


"Aspergillus ochraceus is the traditional ochratoxin A (OTA)-producing fungus with density-dependent behaviors, which is known as quorum sensing (QS) that is mediated by signaling molecules. Individual cells trend to adapt environmental changes in a "whole" flora through communications, allowing fungus to occupy an important ecological niche. Signals perception, transmission, and feedback are all rely on a signal network that constituted by membrane receptors and intracellular effectors. However, the interference of density information in signal transduction, which regulates most life activities of Aspergillus, have yet to be elucidated. Here we show that the G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) to cAMP pathway is responsible for transmitting density information, and regulates the key point in life cycle of A. ochraceus. Firstly, the quorum sensing phenomenon of A. ochraceus is confirmed, and identified the density threshold is 103 spores/mL, which represents the low density that produces the most OTA in a series quorum density. Moreover, the GprC that classified as sugar sensor, and intracellular adenylate cyclase (AcyA)-cAMP-PKA pathway that in response to ligands glucose and HODEs are verified. Furthermore, GprC and AcyA regulate the primary metabolism as well as secondary metabolism, and further affects the growth of A. ochraceus during the entire life cycle. These studies highlight a crucial G protein signaling pathway for cell communication that is mediated by carbohydrate and oxylipins, and clarified a comprehensive effect of fungal development, which include the direct gene regulation and indirect substrate or energy supply. Our work revealed more signal molecules that mediated density information and connected effects on important adaptive behaviors of Aspergillus ochraceus, hoping to achieve comprehensive prevention and control of mycotoxin pollution from interrupting cell communication."


Jing Gao, Huiqing Liu, Yuxin Jin, Yunbo Luo, Kunlun Huang, Zhihong Liang


Cell communication, G protein-coupled receptor, Mycotoxin, Oxylipin, Second messenger 

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