Calvo, Ana M.
M.S. (Master of Science)
Department of Biological Sciences
Biology; Microbiology; Microbiology; Aspergillus flavus; Aflatoxins
The filamentous fungus Aspergillus flavus is an agriculturally important opportunistic plant pathogen that produces potent carcinogenic compounds called aflatoxins. We identified the rtfA gene, ortholog of rtf1 in S. cerevisiae and rtfA in A. nidulans, in A. flavus. Interestingly, rtfA has multiple cellular roles in this mycotoxin-producing fungus. In this study, we show that rtfA regulates conidiation. The rtfA deletion mutant presented smaller conidiophores with significantly reduced conidial production compared to the wild-type strain. The absence of rtfA also resulted in a significantly decreased or lack of sclerotial production under conditions that allowed abundant production of these resistance structures in the wild-type. The deletion of rtfA notably reduced the production of aflatoxin B1, indicating that rtfA is a regulator of mycotoxin biosynthesis in A. flavus. The deletion rtfA also regulates the production of several unknown secondary metabolites.
Lohmar, Jessica M., "rtfA, a putative RNA-pol II transcription elongation factor is necessary for normal morphological and chemical development in the opportunistic plant pathogen Aspergillus flavus" (2015). Graduate Research Theses & Dissertations. 4790.
Northern Illinois University
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