is an opportunistic fungal pathogen which preferentially localizes to the inositol-rich environment of the central nervous system. One of its distinguishing traits is its capacity to catabolize inositol. Inositol is a precursor for the synthesis of phosphatidylinositol (PI). This study demonstrated that synthesizes inositol. Three inositolcontaining sphingolipids were identified in ceramide-(P-inositol)mannose, ceramide-P-inositol-mannose, and ceramide-P-inositol. These inositol-containing sphingolipids are typical of fungi but not higher eukaryotes. The effect of inositol on the membrane lipid composition of was also examined. In contrast to the nonpathogenic yeast , neither the PI composition nor the synthesis of methylated phospholipids was altered by exogenous inositol. Hence, appears to have a metabolic mechanism for maintaining a steady lipid composition regardless of the inositol in its environment.


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