Inositol signaling in the basidiomycete fungus Schizophyllum commune.
Intracellular signaling is conserved in eukaryotes to allow for response to extracellular signals and to regulate development and cellular functions. In fungi, inositol phosphate signaling has been shown to be involved in growth, sexual reproduction, and metabolic adaptation. However, reports on mushroom-forming fungi are lacking so far. In Schizophyllum commune, an inositol monophosphatase has been found up-regulated during sexual development. The enzyme is crucial for inositol cycling, where it catalyzes the last step of inositol phosphate metabolism, restoring the inositol pool from the monophosphorylated inositol monophosphate. We overexpressed the gene in this model basidiomycete and verified its involvement in cell wall integrity and intracellular trafficking. Strong phenotypes in mushroom formation and cell metabolism were evidenced by proteome analyses. In addition, altered inositol signaling was shown to be involved in tolerance towards cesium and zinc, and increased metal tolerance towards cadmium, associated with induced expression of kinases and repression of phosphatases within the inositol cycle. The presence of the heavy metals Sr, Cs, Cd, and Zn lowered intracellular calcium levels. We could develop a model integrating inositol signaling in the known signal transduction pathways governed by Ras, G-protein coupled receptors, and cAMP, and elucidate their different roles in development.