Mitogen-activated protein kinases MpkA and MpkB independently affect micafungin sensitivity in Aspergillus nidulans

The transcriptional regulation of the MAPK mpkA and cell wall-related genes in Aspergillus nidulans differs from that of their counterparts in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The A. nidulans MAPK MpkB is putatively orthologous to the yeast MAPKs Kss1p and Fus3p. To investigate MpkB and its contribution to cell wall integrity in A. nidulans, we constructed mpkB-disruptant (mpkB∆) strains. We previously showed that mpkA∆ strains exhibited reduced colony growth and increased sensitivity to the β-1,3-glucan synthase inhibitor micafungin. Like mpkA∆ strains, mpkB∆ strains exhibited slight growth retardation and increased sensitivity to micafungin. Although MpkB-dependent signaling modulated the transcription of some cell wall-related genes, the sugar composition of cell wall fractions was similar among wild-type, mpkA∆, and mpkB∆ strains. To elucidate the relationship between MpkA and MpkB pathways, we compared conditional mutants of mpkB with those with mpkA deletion. Sensitivity testing suggested that MpkA and MpkB additively contribute to micafungin activity in A. nidulans.