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Reference: Mayrhofer S, et al. (2006) Pheromones and Pheromone Receptors Are Required for Proper Sexual Development in the Homothallic Ascomycete Sordaria macrospora. Genetics 172(3):1521-33

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Abstract


The homothallic, filamentous ascomycete Sordaria macrospora is self-fertile and produces sexual fruiting bodies (perithecia) without a mating partner. Even so S. macrospora transcriptionally expresses two pheromone-precursor genes (ppg1 and ppg2) and two pheromone-receptor genes (pre1 and pre2). The proteins encoded by these genes are similar to alpha-factor-like and a-factor-like pheromones and to G-protein-coupled pheromone receptors of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae. It has been suggested that in S. macrospora, PPG1/PRE2 and PPG2/PRE1 form two cognate pheromone/receptor-pairs. In order to investigate their function, we deleted (Delta) pheromone-precursor genes (Deltappg1, Deltappg2) and receptor genes (Deltapre1, Deltapre2) and generated single- as well as double-knockout strains. No effect on vegetative growth, fruiting-body and ascospore development was seen in the single pheromone-mutant and receptor-mutant strains, respectively. However, double-knockout strains lacking any compatible pheromone/receptor-pair (Deltapre2/Deltappg2, Deltapre1/Deltappg1) and the double-pheromone mutant (Deltappg1/Deltappg2) displayed a drastically reduced number of perithecia and sexual spores, whereas deletion of both receptor genes (Deltapre1/Deltapre2) completely eliminated fruiting-body and ascospore formation. The results suggest that pheromones and pheromone receptors are required for optimal sexual reproduction of the homothallic S. macrospora.

Reference Type
Journal Article
Authors
Mayrhofer S, Weber JM, Poggeler S
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