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PLoS One. 2014 Oct 3;9(10):e107773. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0107773. eCollection 2014.

Characterization of the Neurospora crassa cell fusion proteins, HAM-6, HAM-7, HAM-8, HAM-9, HAM-10, AMPH-1 and WHI-2.

Author information

1
Department of Biological Sciences, SUNY University at Buffalo, Buffalo, New York, United States of America.
2
Institute for Biology II, Albert-Ludwigs University Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany.
3
Institute for Biology II, Albert-Ludwigs University Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany; Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS), Albert-Ludwigs University Freiburg, Freiburg, Germany.

Abstract

Intercellular communication of vegetative cells and their subsequent cell fusion is vital for different aspects of growth, fitness, and differentiation of filamentous fungi. Cell fusion between germinating spores is important for early colony establishment, while hyphal fusion in the mature colony facilitates the movement of resources and organelles throughout an established colony. Approximately 50 proteins have been shown to be important for somatic cell-cell communication and fusion in the model filamentous fungus Neurospora crassa. Genetic, biochemical, and microscopic techniques were used to characterize the functions of seven previously poorly characterized cell fusion proteins. HAM-6, HAM-7 and HAM-8 share functional characteristics and are proposed to function in the same signaling network. Our data suggest that these proteins may form a sensor complex at the cell wall/plasma membrane for the MAK-1 cell wall integrity mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway. We also demonstrate that HAM-9, HAM-10, AMPH-1 and WHI-2 have more general functions and are required for normal growth and development. The activation status of the MAK-1 and MAK-2 MAPK pathways are altered in mutants lacking these proteins. We propose that these proteins may function to coordinate the activities of the two MAPK modules with other signaling pathways during cell fusion.

PMID:
25279949
PMCID:
PMC4184795
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0107773
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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