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Open Access Thesis

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Degree Program

Plant Biology

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

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Clarireedia spp. (formerly Sclerotinia homoeocarpaF.T. Bennett) is the causal agent dollar spot, the most economically important turfgrass disease impacting golf courses in North America. The most effective strategy for dollar spot control is repeated application of multiple classes of fungicides. However, reliance on chemical application has led to resistance to four classes of fungicides as well as multidrug resistance (MDR). Fungi are known to detoxify xenobiotics, like fungicides, through transcriptional regulation of three detoxification phases: modification, conjugation and secretion. Little is known, however, of the protein-protein interactions that facilitate these pathways. Following next-generation RNA sequencing of Clarireedia spp., a fungus-specific transcription factor, XDR1, was determined to play a role in constitutive and induced overexpression of phases I and III genes of xenobiotic detoxification. Further, a novel activation domain (AD) on XDR1 that does not directly bind with xenobiotics was confirmed to be highly conserved among fungal species. Therefore, we hypothesize that XDR1 must be activated by interacting with other binding partners at this AD in order to regulate downstream xenobiotic detoxification pathways. The main objective of this study is to identify additional proteins/ co-repressors that activate XDR1 in order to gain a better understanding of how transcriptional regulation of xenobiotic detoxification pathways leads to MDR.

In order to test the hypothesis, fungicide sensitive strain (HRS10) and fungicide resistant strain (HRI11) were transformed and tagged with xdr1/XDR1 and the 3xFLAG tag. As a result, four fungal transformants were generated and those are HRS10-XDR1-3xFLAG, HRS10-xdr1- 3xFLAG, HRI11-XDR1-3xFLAG, and HRI11-xdr1-3xFLAG. The total protein extractions (whole cell lysates) were subjected to co-immunoprecipitation and the samples were analyzed using LC-MS/MS. According to the set of results, more than 50 proteins were detected with HRS10-XDR1-3xFLAG with and most of these binding partners having functions related to post translational modification, protein turnover, intracellular trafficking, secretion and vascular transport. Going forward, information gained from this experiment could be used to explore how XDR1 interacts with its binding partners to facilitate the transcription of drug metabolizing genes responsible for multidrug resistance. This information could also help identify additional fungicide metabolism pathways in filamentous fungi.


First Advisor

Geunhwa Jung

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.