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Nat Chem Biol. 2009 Jun;5(6):391-3. doi: 10.1038/nchembio.159. Epub 2009 Mar 29.

Dentigerumycin: a bacterial mediator of an ant-fungus symbiosis.

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1
Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.

Abstract

Fungus-growing ants engage in mutualistic associations with both the fungus they cultivate for food and actinobacteria (Pseudonocardia spp.) that produce selective antibiotics to defend that fungus from specialized fungal parasites. We have analyzed one such system at the molecular level and found that the bacterium associated with the ant Apterostigma dentigerum produces dentigerumycin, a cyclic depsipeptide with highly modified amino acids, to selectively inhibit the associated parasitic fungus (Escovopsis sp.).

PMID:
19330011
PMCID:
PMC2748230
DOI:
10.1038/nchembio.159
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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