Post-genomic insights into the plant polysaccharide degradation potential of Aspergillus nidulans and comparison to Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus oryzae

Pedro M. Coutinho, Mikael R. Andersen, Katarina Kolenova, Patricia A. vanKuyk, Isabelle Benoit, Birgit S. Gruben, Blanca Trejo-Aguilar, Hans Visser, Piet van Solingen, Tiina Pakula, Bernard Seiboth, Evy Battaglia, Guillermo Aguilar-Osorio, Jan F. de Jong, Robin A. Ohm, Mariana Aguilar, Bernard Henrissat, Jens Nielsen, Henrik Stålbrand, Ronald P. de Vries (Corresponding Author)

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101 Citations (Scopus)


The plant polysaccharide degradative potential of Aspergillus nidulans was analysed in detail and compared to that of Aspergillus niger and Aspergillus oryzae using a combination of bioinformatics, physiology and transcriptomics. Manual verification indicated that 28.4% of the A. nidulans ORFs analysed in this study do not contain a secretion signal, of which 40% may be secreted through a non-classical method. While significant differences were found between the species in the numbers of ORFs assigned to the relevant CAZy families, no significant difference was observed in growth on polysaccharides. Growth differences were observed between the Aspergilli and Podospora anserina, which has a more different genomic potential for polysaccharide degradation, suggesting that large genomic differences are required to cause growth differences on polysaccharides. Differences were also detected between the Aspergilli in the presence of putative regulatory sequences in the promoters of the ORFs of this study and correlation of the presence of putative XlnR binding sites to induction by xylose was detected for A. niger. These data demonstrate differences at genome content, substrate specificity of the enzymes and gene regulation in these three Aspergilli, which likely reflect their individual adaptation to their natural biotope.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S161-S169
Number of pages9
JournalFungal Genetics and Biology
Issue number1, Supplement
Publication statusPublished - 2009
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Aspergillus
  • Plant polysaccharide degradation
  • CAZy
  • Promoter analysis
  • Micro array analysis
  • XlnR
  • Substrate specificity

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