Unveiling Protein Kinase A Targets in Cryptococcus neoformans Capsule Formation.
The protein kinase A (PKA) signal transduction pathway has been associated with pathogenesis in many fungal species. Geddes and colleagues [mBio 7(1):e01862-15, 2016, doi:10.1128/mBio.01862-15] used quantitative proteomics approaches to define proteins with altered abundance during protein kinase A (PKA) activation and repression in the opportunistic human fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. They observed an association between microbial PKA signaling and ubiquitin-proteasome regulation of protein homeostasis. Additionally, they correlated these processes with expression of polysaccharide capsule on the fungal cell surface, the main virulence-associated phenotype in this organism. Not only are their findings important for microbial pathogenesis, but they also support similar associations between human PKA signaling and ubiquitinated protein accumulation in neurodegenerative diseases.
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