Sparassis crispa (Hanabiratake) is a widely used medicinal mushroom in traditional Chinese medicine because it contains materials with pharmacological activity. Here, we report its 39.0-Mb genome, encoding 13,157 predicted genes, obtained using next-generation sequencing along with RNA-seq mapping data. A phylogenetic analysis by comparison with 25 other fungal genomes revealed that S. crispa diverged from Postia placenta, a brown-rot fungus, 94 million years ago. Several features specific to the genome were found, including the A-mating type locus with the predicted genes for HD1 and HD2 heterodomain transcription factors, the mitochondrial intermediate peptidase (MIP), and the B-mating type locus with seven potential pheromone receptor genes and three potential pheromone precursor genes. To evaluate the benefits of the extract and chemicals from S. crispa, we adopted two approaches: (1) characterization of carbohydrate-active enzyme (CAZyme) genes and ß-glucan synthase genes and the clusters of genes for the synthesis of second metabolites, such as terpenes, indoles and polyketides, and (2) identification of estrogenic activity in its mycelial extract. Two potential ß-glucan synthase genes, ScrFKS1 and ScrFKS2, corresponding to types I and II, respectively, characteristic of Agaricomycetes mushrooms, were newly identified by the search for regions homologous to the reported features of ß-glucan synthase genes; both contained the characteristic transmembrane regions and the regions homologous to the catalytic domain of the yeast ß-glucan synthase gene FKS1. Rapid estrogenic cell-signaling and DNA microarray-based transcriptome analyses revealed the presence of a new category of chemicals with estrogenic activity, silent estrogens, in the extract. The elucidation of the S. crispa genome and its genes will expand the potential of this organism for medicinal and pharmacological purposes.
Journal: Scientific reports