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Chitin synthases play critical roles in hyphal development and fungal pathogenicity. Previous studies on Botrytis cinerea, a model organism for necrotrophic pathogens, have shown that disruption of Bcchs1 and more particularly Bcchs3a genes have a drastic impact on virulence (Soulié et al., 2003, 2006). In this work, we investigate the role of other CHS including BcCHS4, BcCHS6 and BcCHS7 during the life cycle of B. cinerea. Single deletions of corresponding genes were carried out. Phenotypic analysis indicates that: (i) BcCHS4 enzyme is not essential for development and pathogenicity of the fungus; (ii) BcCHS7 is required for pathogenicity in a host dependant manner. For Bcchs6 gene disruption, we obtained only heterokaryotic strains. Indeed, sexual or asexual purification assays were unsuccessful. We concluded that class VI chitin synthase could be essential for B. cinerea and therefore BcCHS6 represents a valuable antifungal target. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Serena Morcx, Caroline Kunz, Mathias Choquer, Sébastien Assie, Eddy Blondet, Elisabeth Simond-Côte, Karina Gajek, Florence Chapeland-Leclerc, Dominique Expert, Marie-Christine Soulie. Disruption of Bcchs4, Bcchs6 or Bcchs7 chitin synthase genes in Botrytis cinerea and the essential role of class VI chitin synthase (Bcchs6). Fungal genetics and biology : FG & B. 2013 Mar;52:1-8

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PMID: 23268147

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