Signalling mucin Msb2 Regulates adaptation to thermal stress inCandida albicans

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Temperature is a potent inducer of fungal dimorphism. Multiple signalling pathways control the response to growth at high temperature, but the sensors that regulate these pathways are poorly defined. We show here that the signalling mucin Msb2 is a global regulator of temperature stress in the fungal pathogenCandida albicans. Msb2 was required for survival and hyphae formation at 42°C. The cytoplasmic signalling domain of Msb2 regulated temperature-dependent activation of the CEK mitogen activated proteins kinase (MAPK) pathway. The extracellular glycosylated domain of Msb2 (100–900 amino acid residues) had a new and unexpected role in regulating the protein kinase C (PKC) pathway. Msb2 also regulated temperature-dependent induction of genes encoding regulators and targets of the unfolded protein response (UPR), which is a protein quality control (QC) pathway in the endoplasmic reticulum that controls protein folding/degradation in response to high temperature and other stresses. The heat shock protein and cell wall component Ssa1 was also required for hyphae formation and survival at 42°C and regulated the CEK and PKC pathways.

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