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The role of flotillin FloA and stomatin StoA in the maintenance of apical sterol-rich membrane domains and polarity in the filamentous fungus Aspergillus nidulans.

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Molecular microbiology


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      Apical sterol-rich plasma membrane domains (SRDs), which can be viewed using the sterol-binding fluorescent dye filipin, are gaining attention for their important roles in polarized growth of filamentous fungi. The microdomain scaffolding protein flotillin/reggie and related stomatin were thought to be good candidates involved in the formation of SRDs. Here, we show that the flotillin/reggie orthologue FloA tagged with GFP localized as stable dots along the plasma membrane except hyphal tips. Deletion of floA reduced the growth rate, often resulted in irregularly shaped hyphae and impaired SRDs. In contrast, the stomatin orthologue StoA, tagged with GFP, localized at the cortex of young branch tips and at the subapical cortex in long hyphal tips, and was transported bi-directionally along microtubules on endosomes. Deletion of stoA resulted in irregular hyphal morphology and increased branching especially in young hyphae, but did not obviously affect SRDs. Double deletion of floA and stoA enhanced the defects of growth and hyphal morphology. Our data suggest that the plasma membrane of hyphal tips and in subapical regions are distinct and that FloA is involved in membrane compartmentalization and probably indirectly in SRD maintenance.

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      [1 ] Karlsruhe Institute of Technology, Institute for Applied Biosciences, Dept. of Microbiology, Hertzstrasse 16, D-76187 Karlsruhe, Germany.
      Mol. Microbiol.
      Molecular microbiology
      Mar 2012
      : 83
      : 6
      22329814 10.1111/j.1365-2958.2012.07996.x


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