de Ramon-Carbonell, Marta; Lopez-Perez, Mario; Gonzalez-Candelas, Luis; Sanchez-Torres, Paloma
A new Penicillium digitatum major facilitator superfamily (MFS) transporter (PdMFS1) was identified and functionally characterized in order to shed more light on the mechanisms underlying fungicide resistance. PdMFS1 can play an important role in the intensification of resistance to fungicides normally used in P. digitatum postharvest treatments. In the PdMFS1 disrupted mutants, a slight effect in response to chemical fungicides was observed, but fungicide sensitivity was highly affected in the overexpression mutants which became resistant to wide range of chemical fungicides. Moreover, P. digitatum knock-out mutants exhibited a lower rate of fungal virulence when infected oranges were stored at 20 degrees C. Disease symptoms were higher in the PdMFS1 overexpression mutants coming from the low-virulent P. digitatum parental strain. In addition, the gene expression analysis showed an induction of PdMFS1 transcription in all overexpression mutants regardless from which progenitor came from, and four-time intensification of the parental wild type strain during citrus infection reinforcing PdMFS1 role in fungal virulence. The P. digitatum MFS transporter PdMFS1 contributes not only to the acquisition of wide range of fungicide resistance but also in fungal virulence during citrus infection.