In natural environments bacteria and filamentous fungi often compete for the same resources. Consequently, production of antibiotic secondary metabolites and defence mechanisms against these compounds have evolved in these organisms. An experimental model has been developed to study the response in fungi exposed to one such antibiotic. The filamentous fungus was treated with bafilomycin B, a -produced antibiotic which reduces radial growth rate and induces morphological changes in fungi. mRNA differential display was used to study changes in fungal gene expression. For five genes, changes in abundance of the corresponding mRNAs, directly or indirectly caused by bafilomycin, were observed. Of these, three were up-regulated and two repressed. With four of these the change in mRNA abundance measured ranged from 10- to 60-fold. However, for one gene the mRNA was only detected after bafilomycin treatment. One of the down-regulated mRNAs encodes ASPND1, a glycoprotein that belongs to a known family of antigens identified in aspergilloma patients. One up-regulated mRNA shows sequence similarities, at the amino acid level, with a cell-wall protein of The remaining three genes were also cloned and sequenced; their sequences do not correspond to known genes in and no similarities with published nucleotide or protein sequences in other organisms were found. These results indicate the feasibility of using mRNA differential display to study interactions between bacteria and filamentous fungi.


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