[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Genome plasticity is a hallmark of Candida albicans and is believed to be an adaptation strategy. But the extent of such genomic variability is not well investigated. In this study, genetic contents of clinical C. albicans isolates were investigated at whole-genome level with array-based comparative genomic hybridization (array CGH) technology. It was revealed that C. albicans possessed variations of genetic contents, as well as aneuploidy. The variable genes were scattered across the chromosomes, as well clustered in particular regions, including sub-telomeric regions, retrotransposon-insertion sites and a variable region on chromosome 6.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Recent evidence has revealed the occurrence of an apoptotic phenotype in Candida albicans that is inducible with environmental stresses such as acetic acid, hydrogen peroxide, and amphotericin B. In the present study, we found that the Chinese herbal medicine Baicalein (BE), which was one of the skullcapflavones, can induce apoptosis in C. albicans. The apoptotic effects of BE were detected by flow cytometry using Annexin V-FITC and DAPI, and it was confirmed by transmission electron microscopy analysis. After exposure to 4 microg/ml BE for 12 h, about 10% of C. albicans cells were apoptotic. Both the increasing intracellular levels of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and upregulation of some redox-related genes (CAP1, SOD2, TRR1) were observed. Furthermore, we compared the survivals of CAP1 deleted, wild-type, and overexpressed strains and found that Cap1p attenuated BE-initiated cell death, which was coherent with a higher mRNA level of the CAP1 gene. In addition, the mitochondrial membrane potential of C. albicans cells changed significantly ( p<0.001) upon BE treatment compared with control. Taken together, our results indicate that BE treatment induces apoptosis in C.albicans cells, and the apoptosis was associated with the breakdown of mitochondrial membrane potential.
Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology 09/2009; 19(8):803-9. · 1.40 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: 1. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of ascorbic acid (AA) on the antifungal activity of fluconazole (FCZ) in a systemic murine candidiasis model as well as in vitro. 2. The murine model was established by infusion of Candida albicans via the tail vein. Control mice received no further treatment. Other groups of mice were injected with FCZ (0.5 mg/kg, i.p.) and then treated or not with 50 or 500 mg/kg AA intragastrically (i.g.) or i.p. In all groups, FCZ was administered i.p. 2 h after fungal inoculation, whereas AA was administered 6 h after fungal inoculation. Survival rate, kidney fungal burden and renal pathological changes were evaluated. 3. The in vitro effects of AA (5, 1 and 0.2 mmol/L) on the growth of various Candida strains in the presence of FCZ (0.125-64 microg/mL) were also investigated. The in vitro effects of two anti-oxidants, namely N-acetylcysteine (NAC; 5, 1 and 0.2 mmol/L) and reduced glutathione (GSH; 5, 1 and 0.2 mmol/L), on FCZ activity were evaluated to determine the mechanism of action of AA. 4. Intragastric administration of AA (50 or 500 mg/kg) significantly decreased the antifungal effect of 0.5 mg/kg FCZ. Although i.p. administration of AA (50 or 500 mg/kg) had no significant effect on the survival of mice, it dose-dependently inhibited the activity of FCZ, with significant inhibition observed with 500 mg/kg AA. 5. In vitro, AA decreased the activity of FCZ against various Candida strains. Both NAC and GSH dose-dependently decreased the activity of FCZ. 6. The results of the present study indicate that AA inhibits the antifungal activity of FCZ, suggesting that the two should not be used together clinically for the treatment of candidiasis.
Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology and Physiology 05/2009; 36(10):e40-6. · 2.16 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Widespread and repeated use of azoles, particularly fluconazole, has led to the rapid development of azole resistance in Candida albicans. Overexpression of CDR1, CDR2, and CaMDR1 has been reported contributing to azole resistance in C. albicans. In this study, hyper-resistant C. albicans mutant, with the above three genes deleted, was obtained by exposure to fluconazole and fluphenezine for 28 passages. Thirty-five differentially expressed genes were identified in the hyper-resistant mutant by microarray analysis; among the 13 up-regulated genes, we successfully constructed the rta2 and ipf14030 null mutants in C. albicans strain with deletions of CDR1, CDR2 and CaMDR1. Using spot dilution assay, we demonstrated that the disruption of RTA2 increased the susceptibility of C. albicans to azoles while the disruption of IPF14030 did not influence the sensitivity of C. albicans to azoles. Meanwhile, we found that ectopic overexpression of RTA2 in C. albicans strain with deletions of CDR1, CDR2 and CaMDR1 conferred resistance to azoles. RTA2 expression was found elevated in clinical azole-resistant isolates of C. albicans. In conclusion, our findings suggest that RTA2 is involved in the development of azole resistance in C. albicans.
Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications 08/2008; 373(4):631-6. · 2.41 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The study was aimed to investigate the effects and mechanism of action of Changtai granule (CT), a traditional compound Chinese medicinal formula, in rodent 2,4,6-trinitrobenzene sulfonic acid (TNBS) colitis. Rats with TNBS/ethanol-induced colitis were used. The colonic wet weight, myeloperoxidase (MPO) activity, macroscopic and histological colon injury was observed. Inflammation cytokines were determined by ELISA methods and semi-quantitative RT-PCR. When dosed orally once daily, CT markedly attenuated TNBS-induced colitis. CT significantly attenuated colonic wet weight, macroscopic and histological colon injury. CT decreased mucosal mRNA levels for several inflammatory mediators: inducible nitric oxide synthase, cyclooxygenase 2, and macrophage inflammatory protein 2. CT also decreased mucosal mRNA and protein levels of T effectors cytokines: tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), interleukin-2 (IL-2) and interferon-gamma (IFN-gamma). Systemic levels of these cytokines were also dramatically attenuated. CD3/CD28-mediated costimulation of T helper 1 effector cytokines release in lamina propria mononuclear cells (LPMC) was markedly inhibited by CT ex vivo and in vitro. Also CT prevented cytokines production by nuclear factor-kappaB (NF-kappaB). The potential anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effect of CT in TNBS colitis suggests that CT may be an effective treatment approach for inflammatory bowel disease.
Journal of Ethnopharmacology 02/2008; 115(1):1-8. · 2.76 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Overexpression of Candida drug resistance 1 (CDR1) gene in Candida albicans (C. albicans), an efflux pump, is one of the major mechanisms contributing to drug resistance. C. albicans for fluconazole resistance 1 protein (Fcr1p) is a member of the family of zinc cluster proteins homologous to Pdr1p and Pdr3p (pleiotropic drug resistance protein) mediating azole resistance in Saccharomyces cerevisiae (S. cerevisiae) by regulating the expression of pleiotropic drug resistance 5 (PDR5) homologous to C. albicans CDR1. A previous study has showed that for fluconazole resistance 1 (FCR1) could also confer azole resistance in S. cerevisiae pdr1 pdr3 mutant by regulating PDR5. Therefore, we investigated the role of FCR1 in the development of C. albicans azole resistance in vitro and in vivo. Our results showed that Fcr1p inhibited fluconazole (FLC) resistance development in C. albicans through abolishing the induction of CDR1 expression by FLC, and in contrast FLC resistance development was accelerated resulting from the deletion of FCR1.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cap1p, a transcription factor in Candida albicans, is believed to be required for tolerance to oxidative stress. However, no information is available concerning its function on basal transcriptional profile. In this study, differentially expressed genes between the CAP1-deleted strain and its parental strain under normal culture condition were identified through microarray analysis. Notably, among the 48 down-regulated genes with the deletion of CAP1, there were three clusters, functionally related to intracellular redox, energy metabolism and substance transport. IPF7817, IPF11105 and FDH11, the three putative Cap1p target genes functionally related to redox, were shown to be activated by oxidative stress in a Cap1p-dependent manner. Furthermore, rhodamine 6G efflux analyses demonstrated that Cap1p contributed to the energy-driven efflux. Taken together, these results reveal that Cap1p plays a significant role in redox status regulation, energy metabolism and substance transport under normal culture condition.
Frontiers in Bioscience 02/2007; 12:145-53. · 3.29 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The activity of HQQ-3, a new triazole antifungal agent, was evaluated and compared with those of fluconazole, ketoconazole and terbinafine in vitro and with fluconazole in vivo. HQQ-3 exhibited potent in vitro activity against clinically important fungi. The activity of HQQ-3 against Candida spp. was superior to those of fluconazole and terbinafine and comparable or superior to that of ketoconazole. HQQ-3 retained potent activity against Candida albicans strains with low levels of susceptibility to fluconazole (fluconazole MIC80s range, 4 to >64 microg/ml). Against Cryptococcus neoformans and filamentous fungi, the activity of HQQ-3 was superior to that of fluconazole. HQQ-3 also exhibited potent in vivo activity against murine systemic infections caused by C. albicns and C. krusei. The 50% effective doses against these infections were 0.12 to 1.9 mg/kg of body weight. These result suggest that HQQ-3 may be useful in the treatment of candidiasis.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the present study, wild-type and mutant Candida drug resistance protein 1 (Cdr1p) was expressed in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and phenotype alterations were observed in order to understand the importance of Cdr1p in azole resistance. Cdr1p was subjected to site-directed mutagenesis resulting in an alteration (W629L) to transmembrane segment 4 (TMS4). The susceptibilities to azole antifungal drugs of yeast cells as well as passive efflux of Rhodamine 6G were measured. The mutant strain showed greater sensitivity to azole antifungal drugs than the strain with the wild-type plasmid (AD-CDR1) as well as reduced efflux of Rhodamine 6G. Taken together, these phenotypic alterations of yeast cells were caused by the mutation in TMS4 of Cdr1p, which suggests that TMS4 plays a major role in azole antifungal drug efflux and is an azole antifungal drug-binding site.
International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents 08/2006; 28(1):69-74. · 4.42 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cap1p, a transcription factor in Candida albicans, is thought to participate in oxidative stress tolerance, but the pathways involved are still unclear. The study was designed to reveal the possible pathways by examining changes in the transcription profile after H2O2 treatment with both the cap1-deleted strain CJD21 and its parental strain CAI4 using microarray analysis. Of the identified 89 genes differentially expressed in CAI4 after exposure to H2O2, 76 genes were in a Cap1p-dependent expression pattern. We have shown that Cap1p is involved in the oxidative stress response in C. albicans via multiple pathways, including the cellular antioxidant defense system (e.g., thioredoxin reductase, glutathione reductase, glutathione S-transferase), carbohydrate metabolism and energy metabolism (e.g., glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase, transaldolase, glyoxalase I, NADH-dependent flavin oxidoreductase), protein degradation (e.g., 26S proteasome regulatory subunit, ubiquitin-specific protease), ATP-dependent RNA helicase (e.g., DEAD box protein ATP-dependent RNA helicase), and resistance pathways (e.g., multidrug resistance protein, ABC transporter essential for cadmium resistance). Real-time reverse transcription-PCR analysis further confirmed the results of microarray. Collectively, this study provides new insight into the biological functions of Cap1p in oxidative stress response.
Free Radical Biology and Medicine 05/2006; 40(7):1201-9. · 5.27 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In vitro interaction of fluconazole and berberine chloride was investigated against 40 fluconazole-resistant clinical isolates of Candida albicans. Synergism in fungistatic activity was found with the checkerboard microdilution assay. The findings of agar diffusion tests and time-kill curves confirmed the synergistic interaction, but no antagonistic action was observed.
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 04/2006; 50(3):1096-9. · 4.57 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The antifungal activity of ZJ-522, a new triazole antifungal agent restructured from fluconazole and butenafine, was compared to that of fluconazole and butenafine against 43 strains of fungi representing 13 fungal species. MICs were determined by using the National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards (NCCLS)-recommended broth microdilution method for yeasts, which was modified for filamentous fungi. ZJ-522 was about 50-fold and 2 to 16-fold more potent than fluconazole against yeasts and filamentous fungi respectively, but it was less active than butenafine against filamentous fungi, although butenafine was inactive against most yeasts. Thus, the fashion of ZJ-522 antifungal activity more similar to that of fluconazole than that of butenafine indicates that ZJ-522 should be an inhibitor of lanosterol 14alpha-demethylase but not of squalene epoxidase, and should be a candidate for clinical development.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Candida albicans is the most frequently isolated fungus in immunocompromised patients associated with mucosal and deep-tissue infections. To investigate the correlation between virulence and resistance on a gene expression profile in C. albicans, we examined the changes in virulence-related genes during the development of resistance in C. albicans from bone marrow transplant patients using a constructed cDNA array representing 3096 unigenes. In addition to the genes known to be associated with azole resistance, 16 virulence-related genes were identified, whose differential expressions were newly found to be associated with the resistant phenotype. Differential expressions for these genes were confirmed by RT-PCR independently. Furthermore, the up-regulation of EFG1, CPH2, TEC1, CDC24, SAP10, ALS9, SNF1, SPO72 and BDF1, and the down-regulation of RAD32, IPF3636 and UBI4 resulted in stronger virulence and invasiveness in the resistant isolates compared with susceptible ones. These findings provide a link between the expression of virulence genes and development of resistance during C. albicans infection in bone marrow transplant (BMT) patients, where C. albicans induces hyphal formation and expression change in multiple virulence factors.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Candida albicans biofilms are structured microbial communities with high levels of drug resistance. Farnesol, a quorum-sensing molecule that inhibits hyphal formation in C. albicans, has been found to prevent biofilm formation by C. albicans. There is limited information, however, about the molecular mechanism of farnesol against biofilm formation. We used cDNA microarray analysis to identify the changes in the gene expression profile of a C. albicans biofilm inhibited by farnesol. Confocal scanning laser microscopy was used to visualize and confirm normal and farnesol-inhibited biofilms. A total of 274 genes were identified as responsive, with 104 genes up-regulated and 170 genes down-regulated. Independent reverse transcription-PCR analysis was used to confirm the important changes detected by microarray analysis. In addition to hyphal formation-associated genes (e.g., TUP1, CRK1, and PDE2), a number of other genes with roles related to drug resistance (e.g., FCR1 and PDR16), cell wall maintenance (e.g., CHT2 and CHT3), and iron transport (e.g., FTR2) were responsive, as were several genes encoding heat shock proteins (e.g., HSP70, HSP90, HSP104, CaMSI3, and SSA2). Further study of these differentially regulated genes is warranted to evaluate how they may be involved in C. albicans biofilm formation. Consistent with the down-regulation of the cell surface hydrophobicity-associated gene (CSH1), the water-hydrocarbon two-phase assay showed a decrease in cell surface hydrophobicity in the farnesol-treated group compared to that in the control group. Our data provide new insight into the molecular mechanism of farnesol against C. albicans biofilm formation.
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy 03/2005; 49(2):584-9. · 4.57 Impact Factor