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Review article - Peer-reviewed, 2018

Assimilation of alternative sulfur sources in fungi

Linder, Tomas


Fungi are well known for their metabolic versatility, whether it is the degradation of complex organic substrates or the biosynthesis of intricate secondary metabolites. The vast majority of studies concerning fungal metabolic pathways for sulfur assimilation have focused on conventional sources of sulfur such as inorganic sulfur ions and sulfur-containing biomolecules. Less is known about the metabolic pathways involved in the assimilation of so-called "alternative" sulfur sources such as sulfides, sulfoxides, sulfones, sulfonates, sulfate esters and sulfamates. This review summarizes our current knowledge regarding the structural diversity of sulfur compounds assimilated by fungi as well as the biochemistry and genetics of metabolic pathways involved in this process. Shared sequence homology between bacterial and fungal sulfur assimilation genes have lead to the identification of several candidate genes in fungi while other enzyme activities and pathways so far appear to be specific to the fungal kingdom. Increased knowledge of how fungi catabolize this group of compounds will ultimately contribute to a more complete understanding of sulfur cycling in nature as well as the environmental fate of sulfur-containing xenobiotics.


Desulfurization; Enzyme; Fungi; Metabolism; Sulfur

Published in

World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology
2018, volume: 34, number: 4, article number: 51

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Molecular Sciences

UKÄ Subject classification

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

Publication Identifiers


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