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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2009

WS-5995 B, an antifungal agent inducing differential gene expression in the conifer pathogen Heterobasidion annosum but not in Heterobasidion abietinum

Lehr, Nina A.; Adomas, Aleksandra; Asiegbu, Frederick O.; Hampp, Ruediger; Tarkka, Mika T.


The mycorrhization helper bacterium Streptomyces sp. AcH 505 inhibits Norway spruce root infection and colonisation by the root and butt rot fungus Heterobasidion annosum 005 but not by the congeneric strain Heterobasidion abietinum 331 because of higher sensitivity of H. annosum 005 towards the AcH 505-derived naphthoquinone antibiotic WS-5995 B. Differences in antibiotic sensitivity between two isolates belonging to two species, H. annosum 005 and H. abietinum 331, were investigated by comparative gene expression analysis using macroarrays and quantitative RT-PCR after WS-5995 B, structurally related mollisin and unrelated cycloheximide application. Treatment with 25 A mu M WS-5995 B for 2 h resulted in a significant up-regulation of expression of inosine-5'-monophosphate dehydrogenase, phosphoglucomutase and GTPase genes, while the expression of genes encoding for thioredoxin and glutathione dependent formaldehyde dehydrogenase was down-regulated in the sensitive fungal strain. No differential expression in the tolerant strain was detected. Application of WS-5995 B at higher concentrations over a time course experiment revealed that H. annosum 005 and H. abietinum 331 responded differently to WS-5995 B. The fungal gene expression levels depended on both the concentration of WS-5995 B and the duration of its application. The WS-5995 B-unrelated cycloheximide caused highly specific changes in patterns of gene expression. Our findings indicate considerable variations in response to bacterial metabolites by the isolates of the conifer pathogen.


Heterobasidion; Plant pathogen; Macroarray; Gene expression; Antibiotic; Streptomyces

Published in

Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
2009, Volume: 85, number: 2, pages: 347-358

    SLU Authors

    • Adomas, Aleksandra

      • Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
      • Asiegbu, Frederick

        • Department of Forest Mycology and Pathology, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences
        • University of Helsinki

      UKÄ Subject classification

      Environmental Sciences related to Agriculture and Land-use

      Publication Identifiers


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