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First in Vivo Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis transcriptomes reveal mechanisms of host exploitation, host-specific gene expression, and expressed genotype shifts

Ellison, Amy, DiRenzo, Graziella V., McDonald, Caitlin A., Lips, Karen R. and Zamudio, Kelly R. 2017. First in Vivo Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis transcriptomes reveal mechanisms of host exploitation, host-specific gene expression, and expressed genotype shifts. G3: Genes | Genomes | Genetics 7 (1) , pp. 269-278. 10.1534/g3.116.035873

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Abstract

For generalist pathogens, host species represent distinct selective environments, providing unique challenges for resource acquisition and defense from host immunity, potentially resulting in host-dependent differences in pathogen fitness. Gene expression modulation should be advantageous, responding optimally to a given host and mitigating the costs of generalism. Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis (Bd), a fungal pathogen of amphibians, shows variability in pathogenicity among isolates, and within-strain virulence changes rapidly during serial passages through artificial culture. For the first time, we characterize the transcriptomic profile of Bd in vivo, using laser-capture microdissection. Comparison of Bd transcriptomes (strain JEL423) in culture and in two hosts (Atelopus zeteki and Hylomantis lemur), reveals >2000 differentially expressed genes that likely include key Bd defense and host exploitation mechanisms. Variation in Bd transcriptomes from different amphibian hosts demonstrates shifts in pathogen resource allocation. Furthermore, expressed genotype variant frequencies of Bd populations differ between culture and amphibian skin, and among host species, revealing potential mechanisms underlying rapid changes in virulence and the possibility that amphibian community composition shapes Bd evolutionary trajectories. Our results provide new insights into how changes in gene expression and infecting population genotypes can be key to the success of a generalist fungal pathogen.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Uncontrolled Keywords: Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis laser capture microdissection transcriptomics gene expression pathogen
Publisher: Genetics Society of America
ISSN: 2160-1836
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 25 January 2017
Date of Acceptance: 10 November 2016
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 09:38
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/97739

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