Divergent Roles for cAMP-PKA Signaling in the Regulation of Filamentous Growth in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Saccharomyces bayanus.
The cyclic AMP - Protein Kinase A (cAMP-PKA) pathway is an evolutionarily conserved eukaryotic signaling network that is essential for growth and development. In the fungi, cAMP-PKA signaling plays a critical role in regulating cellular physiology and morphological switches in response to nutrient availability. We undertook a comparative investigation of the role that cAMP-PKA signaling plays in the regulation of filamentous growth in two closely related budding yeast species, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Saccharomyces bayanus Using chemical and genetic perturbations of this pathway and its downstream targets we discovered divergent roles for cAMP-PKA signaling in the regulation of filamentous growth. While cAMP-PKA signaling is required for the filamentous growth response in both species, increasing or decreasing the activity of this pathway leads to drastically different phenotypic outcomes. In S. cerevisiae, cAMP-PKA inhibition ameliorates the filamentous growth response while hyper-activation of the pathway leads to increased filamentous growth; the same perturbations in S. bayanus result in the obverse. Divergence in the regulation of filamentous growth between S. cerevisiae and S. bayanus extends to downstream targets of PKA, including several kinases, transcription factors, and effector proteins. Our findings highlight the potential for significant evolutionary divergence in gene network function, even when the constituent parts of such networks are well conserved.
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