Autophagy-associated alpha-arrestin signaling is required for conidiogenous cell development in Magnaporthe oryzae
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Conidiation patterning is evolutionarily complex and mechanism concerning conidiogenous cell differentiation remains largely unknown. Magnaporthe oryzae conidiates in a sympodial way and uses its conidia to infect host and disseminate blast disease. Arrestins are multifunctional proteins that modulate receptor down-regulation and scaffold components of intracellular trafficking routes. We here report an alpha-arrestin that regulates patterns of conidiation and contributes to pathogenicity in M. oryzae. We show that disruption of ARRDC1 generates mutants which produce conidia in an acropetal array and ARRDC1 significantly affects expression profile of CCA1, a virulence-related transcription factor required for conidiogenous cell differentiation. Although germ tubes normally develop appressoria, penetration peg formation is dramatically impaired and Delta arrdc1 mutants are mostly nonpathogenic. Fluorescent analysis indicates that EGFP-ARRDC1 puncta are well colocalized with DsRed2-Atg8, and this distribution profile could not be altered in Delta atg9 mutants, suggesting ARRDC1 enters into autophagic flux before autophagosome maturation. We propose that M. oryzae employs ARRDC1 to regulate specific receptors in response to conidiation-related signals for conidiogenous cell differentiation and utilize autophagosomes for desensitization of conidiogenous receptor, which transmits extracellular signal to the downstream elements of transcription factors. Our investigation extends novel significance of autophagy-associated alpha-arrestin signaling to fungal parasites.
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