Open Access Short Report

Relevance of the light signaling machinery for cellulase expression in trichoderma reesei (hypocrea jecorina)

Miklós Gyalai-Korpos1, Gáspár Nagy1, Zoltán Mareczky1, André Schuster2, Kati Réczey1 and Monika Schmoll2*

Author Affiliations

1 Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Department of Applied Biotechnology and Food Science, 1111 Budapest Szent Gellért tér 4., Hungary

2 Vienna University of Technology, Research Area Gene Technology and Applied Biochemistry, 1060 Wien, Gumpendorfer Strasse 1a/1665, Austria

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BMC Research Notes 2010, 3:330  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-3-330

Published: 7 December 2010



In nature, light is one of the most important environmental cues that fungi perceive and interpret. It is known not only to influence growth and conidiation, but also cellulase gene expression. We therefore studied the relevance of the main components of the light perception machinery of Trichoderma reesei (Hypocrea jecorina), ENV1, BLR1 and BLR2, for production of plant cell wall degrading enzymes in fermentations aimed at efficient biosynthesis of enzyme mixtures for biofuel production.


Our results indicate that despite cultivation in mostly dark conditions, all three components show an influence on cellulase expression. While we found the performance of the enzyme mixture secreted by a deletion mutant in env1 to be enhanced, the higher cellulolytic activity observed for Δblr2 is mainly due to an increased secretion capacity of this strain. Δblr1 showed enhanced biomass accumulation, but due to its obviously lower secretion capacity still was the least efficient strain in this study.


We conclude that with respect to regulation of plant cell wall degrading enzymes, the blue light regulator proteins are unlikely to act as a complex. Their regulatory influence on cellulase biosynthesis involves an alteration of protein secretion, which may be due to adjustment of transcription or posttranscriptional regulation of upstream factors. In contrast, the regulatory function of ENV1 seems to involve adjustment of enzyme proportions to environmental conditions.