Surface-penetrating phytopathogenic fungi frequently form appressoria. These are specialised infection structures pivotal to fungal ingress into the host. Recently, we demonstrated that one member of a family of cutinases in Magnaporthe grisea is involved in surface sensing, mediating appressorium differentiation and penetration peg formation and hence facilitates host penetration. Cutinase2 serves as an upstream activator of cAMP/PKA and DAG/PKC signalling cascades and is essential for full virulence. Here, we speculate on the role of rice blast hydrophobins as surface interactors facilitating fungal cutinase activity.
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