Presentation Title

Morphology and Virulence in C. albicans

Advisor Information

Dr. Jill Blankenship

Location

Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library

Presentation Type

Poster

Start Date

2-3-2018 12:30 PM

End Date

2-3-2018 1:45 PM

Abstract

Candida albicans is a fungus capable of causing mucosal infections and life threatening disseminated invasive infections in susceptible individuals. Systemic infections with C. albicans have a 30-50% mortality rate depending on the underlying condition of the patient. The ability of C. albicans to switch between yeast and hyphal growth stages is vital for its ability to cause disseminated infection. EFG1 and HWP1 are key players in the filamentation pathway of C. albicans. EFG1 encodes a transcription factor that promotes filamentation and regulates filament-specific gene expression whereas HWP1 works as a filament-specific adhesion important for developmental regulation. Our understanding of filamentation, as with the majority of C. albicans research, has been almost exclusively carried out in the type strain, SC5314. However, wide variation exists between wild C. albicans strains that likely contribute to distinct pathogenic and antifungal sensitivity profiles. Indeed, critical mutations in EFG1 have been identified in the avirulent and nonfilamentous strain P94015. This study works to describe the morphology of 20 common C. albicans clinical strains and uses comparative analysis to determine key mutations in filamentation genes. EFG1 and HWP1 were selected as having potentially nonfunctional mutant versions of their genes in nonfilamentous strains.

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COinS
 
Mar 2nd, 12:30 PM Mar 2nd, 1:45 PM

Morphology and Virulence in C. albicans

Dr. C.C. and Mabel L. Criss Library

Candida albicans is a fungus capable of causing mucosal infections and life threatening disseminated invasive infections in susceptible individuals. Systemic infections with C. albicans have a 30-50% mortality rate depending on the underlying condition of the patient. The ability of C. albicans to switch between yeast and hyphal growth stages is vital for its ability to cause disseminated infection. EFG1 and HWP1 are key players in the filamentation pathway of C. albicans. EFG1 encodes a transcription factor that promotes filamentation and regulates filament-specific gene expression whereas HWP1 works as a filament-specific adhesion important for developmental regulation. Our understanding of filamentation, as with the majority of C. albicans research, has been almost exclusively carried out in the type strain, SC5314. However, wide variation exists between wild C. albicans strains that likely contribute to distinct pathogenic and antifungal sensitivity profiles. Indeed, critical mutations in EFG1 have been identified in the avirulent and nonfilamentous strain P94015. This study works to describe the morphology of 20 common C. albicans clinical strains and uses comparative analysis to determine key mutations in filamentation genes. EFG1 and HWP1 were selected as having potentially nonfunctional mutant versions of their genes in nonfilamentous strains.