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The Aspergillus niger cypA gene encodes a cyclophilin that mediates sensitivity to the immunosuppressant cyclosporin A

Abstract.

Here we report the cloning and characterization of a gene, cypA, from Aspergillus niger that encodes a peptidyl prolyl cis-trans isomerase (PPIase) belonging to the cyclophilin family. Sequencing of both genomic and cDNA clones revealed two ORFs in cypA, one encoding a 19-kDa protein of 174 amino acid residues and the other a 24-kDa protein of 219 amino acid residues, with overall identities of 27–77% to the homologous cyclophilins from prokaryotic and eukaryotic organisms. Expression of the 19-kDa CYPA-(His)6 in E. coli shows that the purified protein has PPIase activity which is inhibited by cyclosporin A. Northern analysis shows two specific cypA transcripts, the smaller transcript encodes the cytosolic 19-kDa CYPA protein, the larger transcript encodes the putative mitochondrial 24 kDa CYPA protein. The transcript for the cytosolic CYPA is expressed at a higher basal level than that for the mitochondrial protein. The presence of tunicamycin, DTT or cyclosporin A in the medium does not affect the expression level of cypA. Its expression is however slightly induced by heat shock. Growing A. niger mycelium in the presence of cyclosporin A leads to an increase in hyphal branching prior to growth arrest. Overexpression of cypA under the control of its own promoter in A. niger results in increased sensitivity to cyclosporin A, suggesting that cypA encodes the cellular target for cyclosporin A in A. niger.

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Derkx, .P., Madrid, .S. The Aspergillus niger cypA gene encodes a cyclophilin that mediates sensitivity to the immunosuppressant cyclosporin A. Mol Gen Genomics 266, 527–536 (2001). https://doi.org/10.1007/s004380100586

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  • Peptidyl prolyl cis-trans isomerase CsA PPIase Hyphal branching