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Fungal Genet Biol. 1997 Oct;22(2):92-102.

Molecular characterization of mutants of the acetate regulatory gene facB of Aspergillus nidulans.

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Department of Genetics, The University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, 3052, Australia.


The facB gene of Aspergillus nidulans encodes a DNA binding transcriptional activator required for growth on acetate as a sole carbon source. FacB contains N-terminal GAL4-like Zn(II)2Cys6 (or C6 zinc) binuclear cluster DNA binding and leucine zipper-like heptad repeat motifs and central and C-terminal acidic alpha-helical regions. facB recessive loss of function mutants are deficient in acetate induction of acetyl-CoA synthase, isocitrate lyase, malate synthase, acetamidase, and NADP-isocitrate dehydrogenase. Characterization of lesions in facB mutant alleles has localized important functional regions of the FacB protein. Two extreme mutants are shown to lack the C-terminal region of the protein. Two temperature sensitive mutants contain amino acid substitutions in the DNA binding domain and are shown to affect acetate induction of amdS-lacZ expression and confer temperature sensitive in vitro DNA binding. Two temperature sensitive facB mutations result in thermolability of acetyl-CoA synthase, isocitrate lyase, and malate synthase but not acetamidase or NADP-isocitrate dehydrogenase in crude extracts. This suggests that FacB may have a structural role in acetate metabolism in addition to its regulatory function.

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