alexa Ras-Mediated Signal Transduction and Virulence in Human Pathogenic Fungi | OMICS International
ISSN: 2165-8056

Fungal Genomics & Biology
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Review Article

Ras-Mediated Signal Transduction and Virulence in Human Pathogenic Fungi

Jarrod R. Fortwendel*
Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of South Alabama, Mobile AL, USA
Corresponding Author : Jarrod R. Fortwendel
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
5851 USA Drive North
Medical Sciences Building 2102
University of South Alabama, AL 36688, USA
Tel: (251) 460-6681
Fax : (251) 460-7931
E-mail: [email protected]
Received May 23, 2012; Accepted July 03, 2012; Published July 05, 2012
Citation: Fortwendel JR(2012) Ras-Mediated Signal Transduction and Virulence in Human Pathogenic Fungi. Fungal Genomics Biol 2:105. doi:10.4172/2165-8056.1000105
Copyright: © 2012 Fortwendel JR. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Abstract

Signal transduction pathways regulating growth and stress responses are areas of significant study in the effort to delineate pathogenic mechanisms of fungi. In-depth knowledge of signal transduction events deepens our understanding of how a fungal pathogen is able to sense changes in the environment and respond accordingly by modulation of gene expression and re-organization of cellular activities to optimize fitness. Members of the Ras protein family are important regulators of growth and differentiation in eukaryotic organisms, and have been the focus of numerous studies exploring fungal pathogenesis. Here, the current data regarding Ras signal transduction are reviewed for three major pathogenic fungi: Cryptococcus neoformans, Candida albicans and Aspergillus fumigatus. Particular emphasis is placed on Ras-protein interactions during control of morphogenesis, stress response and virulence.

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