Morphology transition genes in the dimorphic fission yeast Schizosaccharomycesjaponicus
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- Enczi, K., Yamaguchi, M. & Sipiczki, M. Antonie van Leeuwenhoek (2007) 92: 143. doi:10.1007/s10482-007-9142-x
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The ability of the saprophytic fungus Schizosaccharomyces japonicus to alternate between unicellular yeast form and multicellular true mycelium makes this organism an attractive non-pathogenic model for the investigation of di- and polymorphism critical for pathogenicity in many pathogenic fungi. In a previous work we described three mutations that made the cells unable to form hyphae. Here we report on the isolation of additional mycelium-minus mutants and show that the mutations represent seven genes. Apart from the inhibition of the yeast-to-mycelium transition, the mutations also cause drastic changes in the yeast phase. Cells of myc3-34 and myc4-35 grow isotropically with apolar distribution of actin and randomised localisation of division planes. The mutants myc1-4, myc1-10, myc1-36, myc5-39 and myc6-43 form sep-like, branching microhyphae containing bipolarly growing cells. All mutants are defective in the polarisation of vacuole distribution, and myc3-34, myc4-35 and myc7-56 are also defective in vacuole fusion. The diversity of the mutant phenotypes indicates that several cellular processes must take place simultaneously for the transition from the yeast phase into the mycelial phase.