Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 495819
Title Asexual sporulation facilitates adaptation : The emergence of azole resistance in Aspergillus fumigatus
Author(s) Zhang, Jianhua; Debets, A.J.M.; Verweij, P.E.; Melchers, W.J.G.; Zwaan, B.J.; Schoustra, S.E.
Source Evolution 69 (2015)10. - ISSN 0014-3820 - p. 2573 - 2586.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1111/evo.12763
Department(s) Laboratory of Genetics
PE&RC
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2015
Keyword(s) Alternation between unicellular and multicellular growth - Asexual sporulation - Aspergillus fumigatus - Azole resistance - Experimental evolution - MIC value - Mycelial growth rate
Abstract

Understanding the occurrence and spread of azole resistance in Aspergillus fumigatus is crucial for public health. It has been hypothesized that asexual sporulation, which is abundant in nature, is essential for phenotypic expression of azole resistance mutations in A. fumigatus facilitating subsequent spread through natural selection. Furthermore, the disease aspergilloma is associated with asexual sporulation within the lungs of patients and the emergence of azole resistance. This study assessed the evolutionary advantage of asexual sporulation by growing the fungus under pressure of one of five different azole fungicides over seven weeks and by comparing the rate of adaptation between scenarios of culturing with and without asexual sporulation. Results unequivocally show that asexual sporulation facilitates adaptation. This can be explained by the combination of more effective selection because of the transition from a multicellular to a unicellular stage, and by increased mutation supply due to the production of spores, which involves numerous mitotic divisions. Insights from this study are essential to unravel the resistance mechanisms of sporulating pathogens to chemical compounds and disease agents in general, and for designing strategies that prevent or overcome the emerging threat of azole resistance in particular.

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