Control of Candida albicans morphology and pathogenicity by post-transcriptional mechanisms

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Abstract

Candida albicans is a major human fungal pathogen responsible for both systemic and mucosal infections in a wide variety of immunocompromised individuals. Because the ability of C. albicans to undergo a reversible morphological transition from yeast to filaments is important for virulence, significant research efforts have focused on mechanisms that control this transition. While transcriptional and post-translational mechanisms have been well-studied, considerably less is known about the role of post-transcriptional mechanisms. However, in recent years several discoveries have begun to shed light on this important, but understudied, area. Here, I will review a variety of post-transcriptional mechanisms that have recently been shown to control C. albicans morphology, virulence and/or virulence-related processes, including those involving alternative transcript localization, mRNA stability and translation. I will also discuss the role that these mechanisms play in other pathogens as well as the potential they may hold to serve as targets for new antifungal strategies. Ultimately, gaining a better understanding of C. albicans post-transcriptional mechanisms will significantly improve our knowledge of how morphogenesis and virulence are controlled in fungal pathogens and open new avenues for the development of novel and more effective antifungals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalCellular and Molecular Life Sciences
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jun 16 2016

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Keywords

  • Alternative transcript localization
  • Antifungal strategies
  • C. albicans
  • Morphogenesis
  • mRNA stability
  • Translational control
  • Virulence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Molecular Medicine
  • Pharmacology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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