, Volume 99, Issue 1, pp 31–39 | Cite as

Selective inactivation of heterokaryons of Candida albicans by anaerobiosis

  • Alvin Sarachek


Heterokaryons (hets), but not monokaryons of Candida albicans die when grown anaerobically on minimal medium. Their rates of inactivation increase with decreases in growth temperatures from 37°C to 25°C. At 10°C, however, anaerobiosis is not lethal and suppresses the inactivation which normally occurs among hets cultured aerobically at that temperature. Killing of hets by anaerobiosis can be altered significantly by certain exogenously provided amino acids or intermediates of oxidative respiration. Aspartic acid alone promotes inactivation whereas alanine, glutamic acid or lysine individually have no effects. However, glutamate and lysine combined afford slight protection against inactivation while aspartate and glutamate combined, with or without lysine, are highly protective: the activity of the aspartate-glutamate combination is completely negated by the addition of alanine. Other common amino acids have no effects on het responses to anaerobiosis other than the ability, when combined, to relieve the antagonism of alanine for the aspartate-glutamate combination. Anaerobic survivals are also enhanced by oxalacetic acid or α-ketoglutaric acid, and even more so by a combination of these two intermediates. The resistances to inactivation elicited by the oxalacetate α-ketoglutarate or aspartate-glutamate combinations are not additive. These relationships are interpreted to signify that inactivation of hets by anaerobic growth is largely, if not exclusively, due to depletion of their oxalacetic acid and α-ketoglutaric acid contents for amino acid biosyntheses, and the unique inability of het cells to replenish those keto acids upon subsequent return to aerobic conditions. The observations are consistent with previous indications that mitochondria formed by hets are functionally abnormal.

Key words

anaerobiosis Candida albicans heterokaryons protoplast fusion 


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Copyright information

© Martinus Nijhoff/Dr W. Junk Publishers 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alvin Sarachek
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biological SciencesWichita State UniversityWichitaUSA

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