Fluorescent Tracking of the Endoplasmic Reticulum in Live Pathogenic Fungal Cells

Raphael I. Benhamou, Qais Z. Jaber, Ido M. Herzog, Yael Roichman, Micha Fridman*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


In fungal cells, the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) harbors several of the enzymes involved in the biosynthesis of ergosterol, an essential membrane component, making this organelle the site of action of antifungal azole drugs, used as a first-line treatment for fungal infections. This highlights the need for specific fluorescent labeling of this organelle in cells of pathogenic fungi. Here we report on the development and evaluation of a collection of fluorescent ER trackers in a panel of Candida, considered the most frequently encountered pathogen in fungal infections. These trackers enabled imaging of the ER in live fungal cells. Organelle specificity was associated with the expression of the target enzyme of antifungal azoles that resides in the ER; specific ER labeling was not observed in mutant cells lacking this enzyme. Labeling of live Candida cells with a combination of a mitotracker and one of the novel fungal ER trackers revealed sites of contact between the ER and mitochondria. These fungal ER trackers therefore offer unique molecular tools for the study of the ER and its interactions with other organelles in live cells of pathogenic fungi.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)3325-3332
Number of pages8
JournalACS Chemical Biology
Issue number12
StatePublished - 21 Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Copyright 2018 American Chemical Society.


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