Aspergillus fumigatus is a serious human pathogen causing life-threatening Aspergillosis in immunocompromised patients. Secondary metabolites (SMs) play an important role in pathogenesis, but the products of many SM biosynthetic gene clusters (BGCs) remain unknown. In this study, we have developed a heterologous expression platform in Aspergillus nidulans, using a newly created genetic dereplication strain, to express a previously unknown BGC from A. fumigatus and determine its products. The BGC produces sartorypyrones, and we have named it the spy BGC. Analysis of targeted gene deletions by HRESIMS, NMR, and microcrystal electron diffraction (MicroED) enabled us to identify 12 products from the spy BGC. Seven of the compounds have not been isolated previously. We also individually expressed the polyketide synthase (PKS) gene spyA and demonstrated that it produces the polyketide triacetic acid lactone (TAL), a potentially important biorenewable platform chemical. Our data have allowed us to propose a biosynthetic pathway for sartorypyrones and related natural products. This work highlights the potential of using the A. nidulans heterologous expression platform to uncover cryptic BGCs from A. fumigatus and other species, despite the complexity of their secondary metabolomes.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- 化學 (全部)