Transposable elements are ubiquitous mobile genetic elements and are present in all pro- and eukaryotic genomes. While
transposons were detected early on in bacteria, plants, animals and yeast, it was only in the 1990s that
they were also described for filamentous fungi. In brief, fungi harbor the same types of transposable elements as other
eukaryotes, i.e. class I and class II transposable elements. Class I elements transpose via an RNA intermediate which is
reverse transcribed. Members of this class include LTR-retrotransposons, non-LTR retrotransposons (or retroposons), and
SINE elements. In contrast, class II elements transpose on the DNA level by excision and reintegration.
We have analyzed transposable elements in industrial strains of Aspergillus niger and Penicillium chrysogenum. Only one active element
called Vader was identified in Aspergillus niger and has been used for transposon mutagenesis. We have developed a tool which allows for selection of transposition and activation of the transposase using the Tet-ON ssytem.
PAUN L, NITSCHE B, HOMAN T, RAM A, KEMPKEN F (2016) An inducible tool for random mutagenesis in Aspergillus niger based on the transposon Vader. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol 100:6309-6317
PAUN L, KEMPKEN F (2014) Fungal Transposable Elements. In: VAN DEN BERG MA, MARUTHACHALAM K (eds.), Genetic Transformation systems in fungi. Vol 2 Fungal Biology. Springer Switzerland, pp 79-96
HIHLAL E, BRAUMANN I, VAN DEN BERG M, KEMPKEN F (2011) Suitability of Vader for transposon-mediated mutagenesis in Aspergillus niger. Appl Environment Microbiol 77: 2332-2336
BRAUMANN I, VAN DEN BERG M, KEMPKEN F (2008) Strain-specific retrotransposon mediated recombination in a commercially used Aspergillus niger strain. Mol Gen Genom 280:319-325
BRAUMANN I, VAN DEN BERG M, KEMPKEN F (2008) Repeat induced point mutation in two sexual fungi, Aspergillus niger and Penicillium chrysogenum. Curr Genet 53:287-297
BRAUMANN I, VAN DEN BERG M, KEMPKEN F (2007) Transposable elements in biotechnologically relevant strains of Aspergillus niger and Penicillium chrysogenum. Fungal Genet Biol 44:1399-1414
Aspergillus niger wild type (below) and Vader mutants (above)