mSphere. 2022 Jan 26:e0001022. doi: 10.1128/msphere.00010-22. Online ahead of print.
Fungal infections represent a major problem in human health. This is particularly the case of infections caused by the filamentous fungus Aspergillus fumigatus, affecting millions of people worldwide. While active germination of conidia is documented to be essential for the A. fumigatus pathogenicity in the context of chronic infections, the molecular mechanisms underlying this morphogenetic transition remain unclear. In a new report, Kirkland and colleagues shed light on a central role of a major stress-sensing pathway in orchestrating the germination process in A. fumigatus. This work provides insight into disruption of an essential cell signaling circuitry for an adequate and long-term adaptation of the fungus to the lung microenvironment.