Recently, researchers from the Institute of Microbiology, Guangdong Academy of Sciences have made progress in the study of sporulation in Ganoderma lucidum. The work was published in Genes with a title of “Transcriptional Dynamics of Genes Purportedly Involved in the Control of Meiosis, Carbohydrate, and Secondary Metabolism during Sporulation in Ganoderma lucidum”. The first author is Dr. Manjun Cai and the corresponding author is Prof. Qingping Wu.
Ganoderma lucidum spores (GLS) are the mature germ cells of G. lucidum and have been shown to contain a variety of bioactive components similar to other parts of G. lucidum. With the advancement of technology for breaking the spore wall and extracting bioactive compounds from spores, GLS have been widely used in immunoregulation, antitumor treatment, neuroprotection, hepatoprotection, antioxidation, anti-radiation, and anti-mutation. Although the pharmacological effects have been demonstrated, the genes and metabolic pathways involved in the crucial stages of sporulation in G. lucidum are still unknown.
In this study, samples corresponding to the abaxial side of the pileus were collected from strain YW-1 at three sequential developmental stages and were then subjected to a transcriptome assay. 1598 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) were identified and the genes related to carbohydrate metabolism were strongly expressed during spore morphogenesis. In particular, genes involved in trehalose and malate synthesis were upregulated, implying the accumulation of specific carbohydrates in mature G. lucidum spores. Furthermore, the expression of genes involved in triterpenoid and ergosterol biosynthesis was high in the young fruiting body but gradually decreased with sporulation. Finally, spore development-related regulatory pathways were explored by analyzing the DNA binding motifs of 24 transcription factors that are considered to participate in the control of sporulation. These results provide a dataset of dynamic gene expression during sporulation in G. lucidum. They also shed light on genes potentially involved in transcriptional regulation of the meiotic process, metabolism pathways in energy provision, and ganoderic acids and ergosterol biosynthesis.