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FEMS Microbiol Rev. 2007 Nov;31(6):657-75. Epub 2007 Sep 3.

Fungal nucleobase transporters.

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Faculty of Biology, Department of Botany, University of Athens, Panepistimioupolis, Athens, Greece.


Early genetic and physiological work in bacteria and fungi has suggested the presence of highly specific nucleobase transport systems. Similar transport systems are now known to exist in algae, plants, protozoa and metazoa. Within the last 15 years, a small number of microbial genes encoding nucleobase transporters have been cloned and studied in great detail. The sequences of several other putative proteins submitted to databases are homologous to the microbial nucleobase transporters but their physiological functions remain largely undetermined. In this review, genetic, biochemical and molecular data are described concerning mostly the nucleobase transporters of Aspergillus nidulans and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the two model ascomycetes from which the great majority of data come from. It is also discussed as to what is known on the nucleobase transporters of the two most significant pathogenic fungi: Candida albicans and Aspergillus fumigatus. Apart from highlighting how a basic process such as nucleobase recognition and transport operates, this review intends to highlight features that might be applicable to antifungal pharmacology.

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