Developmental Regulation of Amino Acid Transport in Neurospora crassa


Conidia of Neurospora crassa exhibit an ability to transport various amino acids against a concentration gradient. The conidial transport system has previously been characterized in terms of kinetics, competitions, and genetic control. This study describes the development of a new and highly active transport capability which is elaborated during the early stages of development but prior to evident germination. It has been named “postconidial” transport activity and represents as much as 20-fold greater initial rates as compared to those observed with conidia. Development of the postconidial transport activity requires protein synthesis and can be partially repressed when the substrate amino acid is present during the developmental preincubation period. A mutant has been utilized which exhibits normal conidial but fails to develop normal postconidial transport activity for any amino acid examined. Although temperature optimum and pH dependence are similar in conidial and postconidial systems, there is evidence that the new activity is not a simple amplification of an existing capability. This is reflected as a change in competition patterns between particular amino acids as development proceeds.

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