The impact of natamycin on Aspergillus niger was analysed during the first 8 h of germination of conidia. Polarisation, germ tube formation, and mitosis were inhibited in the presence of 3 and 10 mu M of the anti-fungal compound, while at 10 mu M also isotropic growth was affected. Natamycin did not have an effect on the decrease of microviscosity during germination and the concomitant reduction in mannitol and trehalose levels. However, it did abolish the increase of intracellular levels of glycerol and glucose during the 8 h period of germination. Natamycin hardly affected the changes that occur in the RNA profile during the first 2 h of germination. During this time period, genes related to transcription, protein synthesis, energy and cell cycle and DNA processing were particularly up-regulated. Differential expression of 280 and 2586 genes was observed when 8 h old germlings were compared with conidia that had been exposed to 3 mu M and 10 mu M natamycin, respectively. For instance, genes involved in ergosterol biosynthesis were down-regulated. On the other hand, genes involved in endocytosis and the metabolism of compatible solutes, and genes encoding protective proteins were up-regulated in natamycin treated conidia.
- germinating conidia