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Mol Microbiol. 2008 Apr;68(1):186-201. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2958.2008.06143.x. Epub 2008 Feb 26.

The ATP-binding cassette transporter-encoding gene CgSNQ2 is contributing to the CgPDR1-dependent azole resistance of Candida glabrata.

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Institute of Microbiology, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Rome, Italy.


Our previous investigation on Candida glabrata azole-resistant isolates identified two isolates with unaltered expression of CgCDR1/CgCDR2, but with upregulation of another ATP-binding cassette transporter, CgSNQ2, which is a gene highly similar to ScSNQ2 from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. One of the two isolates (BPY55) was used here to elucidate this phenomenon. Disruption of CgSNQ2 in BPY55 decreased azole resistance, whereas reintroduction of the gene in a CgSNQ2 deletion mutant fully reversed this effect. Expression of CgSNQ2 in a S. cerevisiae strain lacking PDR5 mediated not only resistance to azoles but also to 4-nitroquinoline N-oxide, which is a ScSNQ2-specific substrate. A putative gain-of-function mutation, P822L, was identified in CgPDR1 from BPY55. Disruption of CgPDR1 in BPY55 conferred enhanced azole susceptibility and eliminated CgSNQ2 expression, whereas introduction of the mutated allele in a susceptible strain where CgPDR1 had been disrupted conferred azole resistance and CgSNQ2 upregulation, indicating that CgSNQ2 was controlled by CgPDR1. Finally, CgSNQ2 was shown to be involved in the in vivo response to fluconazole. Together, our data first demonstrate that CgSNQ2 contributes to the development of CgPDR1-dependent azole resistance in C. glabrata. The overlapping in function and regulation between CgSNQ2 and ScSNQ2 further highlight the relationship between S. cerevisiae and C. glabrata.

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