Research Article

Current Genetics

, Volume 41, Issue 1, pp 43-47

First online:

Mitochondrial DNA polymorphisms in the human pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans

  • Jianping XuAffiliated withDepartment of Biology, LSB437, McMaster University, 1280 Main Street West, Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4K1, Canada

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This study examined mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) restriction site polymorphisms among 416 strains of the human pathogenic yeast Cryptococcus neoformans from the United States and Japan. The strains included 378 serotype A, 14 serotype D, 18 serotype AD, two serotype B, and two strains whose serotype could not be determined using current commercial monoclonal antibodies. Portions of two genes were examined: (1) the mitochondrial large ribosomal RNA gene (mtLrRNA) and (2) the NADH dehydrogenase subunit 2 (ND2). To screen for polymorphisms among the 416 strains, the endonuclease MaeIII was used to digest the PCR-amplified mtLrRNA gene fragment and three endonucleases (BanI, AluI, MseI) were used to digest the PCR-amplified ND2 gene fragment. Four mtDNA haplotypes were identified among these strains. All strains of serotype A had mtDNA haplotype I, strains of serotype D had haplotype II, and strains of serotype B had haplotypes III and IV. Of the two non-typable strains, one was haplotype I while the other was haplotype II. Among the strains of serotype AD, 14 were haplotype I and the other four were haplotype II. These results were discussed in the context of recent findings regarding the origins of serotype AD strains and the observed uniparental mtDNA inheritance in laboratory crosses between strains of serotypes A and D.

Cryptococcus Mitochondrial DNA PCR-RFLP Serotypes