DIFFERENTIAL VIRULENCE OF CANDIDA ALBICANS AND CANDIDA DUBLINIENSIS: A ROLE FOR TOR KINASE?
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Citation:MORAN GP and SULLIVAN DJ, DIFFERENTIAL VIRULENCE OF CANDIDA ALBICANS AND CANDIDA DUBLINIENSIS: A ROLE FOR TOR KINASE?, VIRULENCE, 2, 1, 2011, 77 - 81
Candida albicans and Candida dubliniensis are two very closely related species of pathogenic yeast. C. albicans is the most prevalent species in the human gastrointestinal tract and is responsible for far more opportunistic infections in comparison with C. dubliniensis. This disparity is likely to be due to the reduced ability of C. dubliniensis to undergo the yeast to hypha transition, a change in morphology that plays an important role in C. albicans virulence. We have recently shown that hypha formation by C. dubliniensis is specifically repressed by nutrients at alkaline pH. In this article, we present new data showing that this can be partly reversed by treatment with rapamycin, an inhibitor of the nutrient sensing kinase Tor1 (Target Of Rapamycin). We also provide a speculative model to describe why C. albicans filaments more efficiently in nutrient rich environments, citing recently described data on Mds3, a pH responsive regulator of Tor1 kinase activity.