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A cDNA-AFLP approach to study ochratoxin A production in Aspergillus carbonarius

Botton, Alessandro, Ferrigo, Davide, Scopel, Cristina, Causin, Roberto, Bonghi, Claudio, Ramina, Angelo
International journal of food microbiology 2008 v.127 no.1-2 pp. 105-115
Aspergillus carbonarius, toxigenic strains, food pathogens, secondary metabolites, ochratoxin A, biosynthesis, G-proteins, calcium, calmodulin, phosphorylation, dephosphorylation, zinc finger motif, amplified fragment length polymorphism, vegetative cells
Aspergillus carbonarius is responsible for the majority of mycotoxin contaminations in grapes and its derivatives. Most of A. carbonarius strains are ochratoxin A (OTA) producers, even though at very different levels. This broad variability was used to identify genes whose expression is linked with the ability of producing OTA. A cDNA-AFLP differential display screening was performed in two strains of A. carbonarius, antagonists for the ability of producing OTA, allowing the identification of 119 differentially expressed sequences putatively involved in the regulation of OTA biosynthesis. A likely connection was pointed out between the biosynthesis of the toxin, vegetative growth and sexual/asexual developmental progression, along with common signalling pathways involving G protein and Ca²⁺/calmodulin dependent phosphorylation and dephoshorylation cascades.