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International Journal of Genomics
Volume 2017 (2017), Article ID 6923849, 14 pages
Research Article

Transcriptome-Based Modeling Reveals that Oxidative Stress Induces Modulation of the AtfA-Dependent Signaling Networks in Aspergillus nidulans

1Department of Biotechnology and Microbiology, Faculty of Science and Technology, University of Debrecen, Debrecen, P.O. Box 63 H-4010, Hungary
2Department of Zoology, Faculty of Sciences, Eszterházy Károly University, Eger, Eszterházy tér 1 H-3300, Hungary
3Department of General and Environmental Microbiology, Faculty of Sciences, University of Pécs, Pécs, P. O. Box 266 H-7601, Hungary
4Department of Pharmaceutical Engineering, Woosuk University, Wanju 565-701, Republic of Korea
5Department of Bacteriology, University of Wisconsin, 1550 Linden Dr., Madison, WI 53706, USA

Correspondence should be addressed to Tamás Emri

Received 19 December 2016; Revised 17 May 2017; Accepted 13 June 2017; Published 9 July 2017

Academic Editor: Marco Gerdol

Copyright © 2017 Erzsébet Orosz et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


To better understand the molecular functions of the master stress-response regulator AtfA in Aspergillus nidulans, transcriptomic analyses of the atfA null mutant and the appropriate control strains exposed to menadione sodium bisulfite- (MSB-), t-butylhydroperoxide- and diamide-induced oxidative stresses were performed. Several elements of oxidative stress response were differentially expressed. Many of them, including the downregulation of the mitotic cell cycle, as the MSB stress-specific upregulation of FeS cluster assembly and the MSB stress-specific downregulation of nitrate reduction, tricarboxylic acid cycle, and ER to Golgi vesicle-mediated transport, showed AtfA dependence. To elucidate the potential global regulatory role of AtfA governing expression of a high number of genes with very versatile biological functions, we devised a model based on the comprehensive transcriptomic data. Our model suggests that an important function of AtfA is to modulate the transduction of stress signals. Although it may regulate directly only a limited number of genes, these include elements of the signaling network, for example, members of the two-component signal transduction systems. AtfA acts in a stress-specific manner, which may increase further the number and diversity of AtfA-dependent genes. Our model sheds light on the versatility of the physiological functions of AtfA and its orthologs in fungi.