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Fungal Genet Biol. 1998 Apr;23(3):248-58.

Calcineurin subunit B is required for normal vegetative growth in Neurospora crassa.

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Department of Biological Sciences, SUNY/Buffalo 14260-1300, USA.


A series of Neurospora crassa mutants affected in the ability to regulate entry into conidiation (an asexual developmental program) were isolated by using an insertional mutagenesis procedure followed by a screening protocol. One of the mutants isolated by this approach consisted entirely of cells with an abnormal morphology. The mutant produces chains of swollen septated cells. The developmentally regulated ccg-1 gene is constitutively expressed in these cells, suggesting that they have entered the conidial developmental program. The insertionally disrupted gene cnb-1 was isolated by plasmid rescue and found to encode calcineurin B, the regulatory subunit of the Ca2+ and calmodulin-dependent protein phosphatase calcineurin. The data demonstrate that calcineurin B is required for normal vegetative growth in N. crassa and suggest that the cnb-1 mutant is unable to repress entry into the asexual developmental program. The results suggest that Ca2+ may play an important role in regulating fungal morphology.

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