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J Amino Acids. 2012;2012:837932. doi: 10.1155/2012/837932. Epub 2012 Aug 22.

Polyamine metabolism in fungi with emphasis on phytopathogenic species.

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  • 1Departamento de Ingeniería Genética, Centro de Investigación y de Estudios Avanzados del Instituto Politécnico Nacional, Unidad Irapuato, Km 9.6, Libramiento Norte, Carretera Irapuato-León, 36821 Irapuato, GTO, Mexico.


Polyamines are essential metabolites present in all living organisms, and this subject has attracted the attention of researchers worldwide interested in defining their mode of action in the variable cell functions in which they are involved, from growth to development and differentiation. Although the mechanism of polyamine synthesis is almost universal, different biological groups show interesting differences in this aspect that require to be further analyzed. For these studies, fungi represent interesting models because of their characteristics and facility of analysis. During the last decades fungi have contributed to the understanding of polyamine metabolism. The use of specific inhibitors and the isolation of mutants have allowed the manipulation of the pathway providing information on its regulation. During host-fungus interaction polyamine metabolism suffers striking changes in response to infection, which requires examination. Additionally the role of polyamine transporter is getting importance because of its role in polyamine regulation. In this paper we analyze the metabolism of polyamines in fungi, and the difference of this process with other biological groups. Of particular importance is the difference of polyamine biosynthesis between fungi and plants, which makes this process an attractive target for the control of phytopathogenic fungi.

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