Transformation of Candida albicans with a synthetic hygromycin B resistance gene

Luiz R. Basso, Ann Bartiss, Yuxin Mao, Charles E. Gast, Paulo S.R. Coelho, Michael Snyder, Brian Wong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


Synthetic genes that confer resistance to the antibiotic nourseothricin in the pathogenic fungus Candida albicans are available, but genes conferring resistance to other antibiotics are not. We found that multiple C. albicans strains were inhibited by hygromycin B, so we designed a 1026 bp gene (CaHygB) that encodes Escherichia coli hygromycin B phosphotransferase with C. albicans codons. CaHygB conferred hygromycin B resistance in C. albicans transformed with ars2-containing plasmids or single-copy integrating vectors. Since CaHygB did not confer nourseothricin resistance and since the nourseothricin resistance marker SAT-1 did not confer hygromycin B resistance, we reasoned that these two markers could be used for homologous gene disruptions in wild-type C. albicans. We used PCR to fuse CaHygB or SAT-1 to approximately 1 kb of 5' and 3' noncoding DNA from C. albicans ARG4, HIS1 and LEU2, and introduced the resulting amplicons into six wild-type C. albicans strains. Homologous targeting frequencies were approximately 50-70%, and disruption of ARG4, HIS1 and LEU2 alleles was verified by the respective transformants' inabilities to grow without arginine, histidine and leucine. CaHygB should be a useful tool for genetic manipulation of different C. albicans strains, including clinical isolates.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1039-1048
Number of pages10
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Candida albicans
  • Dominant selection marker
  • Hygromycin B
  • Targeted gene disruption

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Bioengineering
  • Biochemistry
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Genetics


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