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Selected Publication:

Blasi, B; Tafer, H; Tesei, D; Sterflinger, K; .
(2015): From Glacier to Sauna: RNA-Seq of the Human Pathogen Black Fungus Exophiala dermatitidis under Varying Temperature Conditions Exhibits Common and Novel Fungal Response.
PLoS One. 2015; 10(6):e0127103 FullText FullText_BOKU

Exophiala dermatitidis (Wangiella dermatitidis) belongs to the group of the so-called black yeasts. Thanks in part to its thick and strongly melanized cell walls, E. dermatitidis is extremely tolerant to various kinds of stress, including extreme pH, temperature and desiccation. E. dermatitidis is also the agent responsible for various severe illnesses in humans, such as pneumonia and keratitis, and might lead to fatal brain infections. Due to its association with the human environment, its poly-extremophilic lifestyle and its pathogenicity in humans, E. dermatitidis has become an important model organism. In this study we present the functional analysis of the transcriptional response of the fungus at 1 degrees C and 45 degrees C, in comparison with that at 37 degrees C, for two different exposition times, i.e. 1 hour and 1 week. At 1 degrees C, E. dermatitidis uses a large repertoire of tools to acclimatize, such as lipid membrane fluidization, trehalose production or cytoskeleton rearrangement, which allows the fungus to remain metabolically active. At 45 degrees C, the fungus drifts into a replicative state and increases the activity of the Golgi apparatus. As a novel finding, our study provides evidence that, apart from the protein coding genes, non-coding RNAs, circular RNAs as well as fusion-transcripts are differentially regulated and that the function of the fusion-transcripts can be related to the corresponding temperature condition. This work establishes that E. dermatitidis adapts to its environment by modulating coding and non-coding gene transcription levels and through the regulation of chimeric and circular RNAs.
Authors BOKU Wien:
Blasi Barbara
Sterflinger-Gleixner Katja
Tesei Donatella

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