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    Charles A Specht PhD

    TitleResearch Associate Professor
    InstitutionUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
    DepartmentMedicine
    AddressUniversity of Massachusetts Medical School
    364 Plantation Street, LRB
    Worcester MA 01605
    Phone508-856-4721
        Bibliographic 
        selected publications
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        1. Chaudhari SS, Arakane Y, Specht CA, Moussian B, Kramer KJ, Muthukrishnan S, Beeman RW. Retroactive Maintains Cuticle Integrity by Promoting the Trafficking of Knickkopf into the Procuticle of Tribolium castaneum. PLoS Genet. 2013 Jan; 9(1):e1003268.
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        2. Bueter CL, Specht CA, Levitz SM. Innate sensing of chitin and chitosan. PLoS Pathog. 2013 Jan; 9(1):e1003080.
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        3. Jasrapuria S, Specht CA, Kramer KJ, Beeman RW, Muthukrishnan S. Gene Families of Cuticular Proteins Analogous to Peritrophins (CPAPs) in Tribolium castaneum Have Diverse Functions. PLoS One. 2012; 7(11):e49844.
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        4. Heustis RJ, Ng HK, Brand KJ, Rogers MC, Le LT, Specht CA, Fuhrman JA. Pharyngeal Polysaccharide Deacetylases Affect Development in the Nematode C. elegans and Deacetylate Chitin In Vitro. PLoS One. 2012; 7(7):e40426.
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        5. Huang H, Ostroff GR, Lee CK, Agarwal S, Ram S, Rice PA, Specht CA, Levitz SM. Relative Contributions of Dectin-1 and Complement to Immune Responses to Particulate ß-Glucans. J Immunol. 2012 May 30.
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        6. Gilbert NM, Baker LG, Specht CA, Lodge JK. A Glycosylphosphatidylinositol Anchor Is Required for Membrane Localization but Dispensable for Cell Wall Association of Chitin Deacetylase 2 in Cryptococcus neoformans. MBio. 2012; 3(1).
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        7. Merzendorfer H, Kim HS, Chaudhari SS, Kumari M, Specht CA, Butcher S, Brown SJ, Robert Manak J, Beeman RW, Kramer KJ, Muthukrishnan S. Genomic and proteomic studies on the effects of the insect growth regulator diflubenzuron in the model beetle species Tribolium castaneum. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2012 Apr; 42(4):264-76.
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        8. Chaudhari SS, Arakane Y, Specht CA, Moussian B, Boyle DL, Park Y, Kramer KJ, Beeman RW, Muthukrishnan S. Knickkopf protein protects and organizes chitin in the newly synthesized insect exoskeleton. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2011 Oct 11; 108(41):17028-33.
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        9. Agarwal S, Specht CA, Haibin H, Ostroff GR, Ram S, Rice PA, Levitz SM. Linkage specificity and role of properdin in activation of the alternative complement pathway by fungal glycans. MBio. 2011; 2(5).
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        10. Bueter CL, Lee CK, Rathinam VA, Healy GJ, Taron CH, Specht CA, Levitz SM. Chitosan but Not Chitin Activates the Inflammasome by a Mechanism Dependent upon Phagocytosis. J Biol Chem. 2011 Oct 14; 286(41):35447-55.
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        11. Baker LG, Specht CA, Lodge JK. Cell Wall Chitosan Is Necessary for Virulence in the Opportunistic Pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. Eukaryot Cell. 2011 Sep; 10(9):1264-8.
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        12. Ramirez-Ortiz ZG, Lee CK, Wang JP, Boon L, Specht CA, Levitz SM. A Nonredundant Role for Plasmacytoid Dendritic Cells in Host Defense against the Human Fungal Pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus. Cell Host Microbe. 2011 May 19; 9(5):415-24.
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        13. Jesus MD, Nicola AM, Chow SK, Lee IR, Nong S, Specht CA, Levitz SM, Casadevall A. Glucuronoxylomannan, galactoxylomannan, and mannoprotein occupy spatially separate and discrete regions in the capsule of Cryptococcus neoformans. Virulence. 2011 Jan 10; 1(6):500-8.
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        14. Huang H, Ostroff GR, Lee CK, Specht CA, Levitz SM. Robust Stimulation of Humoral and Cellular Immune Responses following Vaccination with Antigen-Loaded beta-Glucan Particles. MBio. 2010; 1(3).
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        15. Gilbert NM, Donlin MJ, Gerik KJ, Specht CA, Djordjevic JT, Wilson CF, Sorrell TC, Lodge JK. KRE genes are required for beta-1,6-glucan synthesis, maintenance of capsule architecture and cell wall protein anchoring in Cryptococcus neoformans. Mol Microbiol. 2010 Apr; 76(2):517-34.
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        16. Baker LG, Specht CA, Lodge JK. Chitinases are essential for sexual development but not vegetative growth in Cryptococcus neoformans. Eukaryot Cell. 2009 Nov; 8(11):1692-705.
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        17. Huang H, Ostroff GR, Lee CK, Wang JP, Specht CA, Levitz SM. Distinct patterns of dendritic cell cytokine release stimulated by fungal beta-glucans and toll-like receptor agonists. Infect Immun. 2009 May; 77(5):1774-81.
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        18. Arakane Y, Dixit R, Begum K, Park Y, Specht CA, Merzendorfer H, Kramer KJ, Muthukrishnan S, Beeman RW. Analysis of functions of the chitin deacetylase gene family in Tribolium castaneum. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2009 May-Jun; 39(5-6):355-65.
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        19. Gerik KJ, Bhimireddy SR, Ryerse JS, Specht CA, Lodge JK. PKC1 is essential for protection against both oxidative and nitrosative stresses, cell integrity, and normal manifestation of virulence factors in the pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans. Eukaryot Cell. 2008 Oct; 7(10):1685-98.
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        20. Arakane Y, Specht CA, Kramer KJ, Muthukrishnan S, Beeman RW. Chitin synthases are required for survival, fecundity and egg hatch in the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2008 Oct; 38(10):959-62.
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        21. Ramirez-Ortiz ZG, Specht CA, Wang JP, Lee CK, Bartholomeu DC, Gazzinelli RT, Levitz SM. Toll-like receptor 9-dependent immune activation by unmethylated CpG motifs in Aspergillus fumigatus DNA. Infect Immun. 2008 May; 76(5):2123-9.
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        22. Dixit R, Arakane Y, Specht CA, Richard C, Kramer KJ, Beeman RW, Muthukrishnan S. Domain organization and phylogenetic analysis of proteins from the chitin deacetylase gene family of Tribolium castaneum and three other species of insects. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2008 Apr; 38(4):440-51.
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        23. Specht CA, Nong S, Dan JM, Lee CK, Levitz SM. Contribution of glycosylation to T cell responses stimulated by recombinant Cryptococcus neoformans mannoprotein. J Infect Dis. 2007 Sep 1; 196(5):796-800.
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        24. Baker LG, Specht CA, Donlin MJ, Lodge JK. Chitosan, the deacetylated form of chitin, is necessary for cell wall integrity in Cryptococcus neoformans. Eukaryot Cell. 2007 May; 6(5):855-67.
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        25. Levitz SM, Specht CA. The molecular basis for the immunogenicity of Cryptococcus neoformans mannoproteins. FEMS Yeast Res. 2006 Jun; 6(4):513-24.
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        26. Van Dellen KL, Bulik DA, Specht CA, Robbins PW, Samuelson JC. Heterologous expression of an Entamoeba histolytica chitin synthase in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Eukaryot Cell. 2006 Jan; 5(1):203-6.
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        27. Lam JS, Mansour MK, Specht CA, Levitz SM. A model vaccine exploiting fungal mannosylation to increase antigen immunogenicity. J Immunol. 2005 Dec 1; 175(11):7496-503.
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        28. Banks IR, Specht CA, Donlin MJ, Gerik KJ, Levitz SM, Lodge JK. A chitin synthase and its regulator protein are critical for chitosan production and growth of the fungal pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. Eukaryot Cell. 2005 Nov; 4(11):1902-12.
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        29. Dünkler A, Walther A, Specht CA, Wendland J. Candida albicans CHT3 encodes the functional homolog of the Cts1 chitinase of Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Fungal Genet Biol. 2005 Nov; 42(11):935-47.
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        30. Colussi PA, Specht CA, Taron CH. Characterization of a nucleus-encoded chitinase from the yeast Kluyveromyces lactis. Appl Environ Microbiol. 2005 Jun; 71(6):2862-9.
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        31. Hogenkamp DG, Arakane Y, Zimoch L, Merzendorfer H, Kramer KJ, Beeman RW, Kanost MR, Specht CA, Muthukrishnan S. Chitin synthase genes in Manduca sexta: characterization of a gut-specific transcript and differential tissue expression of alternately spliced mRNAs during development. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2005 Jun; 35(6):529-40.
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        32. Lesage G, Shapiro J, Specht CA, Sdicu AM, Ménard P, Hussein S, Tong AH, Boone C, Bussey H. An interactional network of genes involved in chitin synthesis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. BMC Genet. 2005; 6:8.
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        33. Loftus BJ, Fung E, Roncaglia P, Rowley D, Amedeo P, Bruno D, Vamathevan J, Miranda M, Anderson IJ, Fraser JA, Allen JE, Bosdet IE, Brent MR, Chiu R, Doering TL, Donlin MJ, D'Souza CA, Fox DS, Grinberg V, Fu J, Fukushima M, Haas BJ, Huang JC, Janbon G, Jones SJ, Koo HL, Krzywinski MI, Kwon-Chung JK, Lengeler KB, Maiti R, Marra MA, Marra RE, Mathewson CA, Mitchell TG, Pertea M, Riggs FR, Salzberg SL, Schein JE, Shvartsbeyn A, Shin H, Shumway M, Specht CA, Suh BB, Tenney A, Utterback TR, Wickes BL, Wortman JR, Wye NH, Kronstad JW, Lodge JK, Heitman J, Davis RW, Fraser CM, Hyman RW. The genome of the basidiomycetous yeast and human pathogen Cryptococcus neoformans. Science. 2005 Feb 25; 307(5713):1321-4.
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        34. Sobering AK, Watanabe R, Romeo MJ, Yan BC, Specht CA, Orlean P, Riezman H, Levin DE. Yeast Ras regulates the complex that catalyzes the first step in GPI-anchor biosynthesis at the ER. Cell. 2004 May 28; 117(5):637-48.
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        35. Garcerá-Teruel A, Xoconostle-Cázares B, Rosas-Quijano R, Ortiz L, León-Ramírez C, Specht CA, Sentandreu R, Ruiz-Herrera J. Loss of virulence in Ustilago maydis by Umchs6 gene disruption. Res Microbiol. 2004 Mar; 155(2):87-97.
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        36. Arakane Y, Hogenkamp DG, Zhu YC, Kramer KJ, Specht CA, Beeman RW, Kanost MR, Muthukrishnan S. Characterization of two chitin synthase genes of the red flour beetle, Tribolium castaneum, and alternate exon usage in one of the genes during development. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2004 Mar; 34(3):291-304.
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        37. Bulik DA, Olczak M, Lucero HA, Osmond BC, Robbins PW, Specht CA. Chitin synthesis in Saccharomyces cerevisiae in response to supplementation of growth medium with glucosamine and cell wall stress. Eukaryot Cell. 2003 Oct; 2(5):886-900.
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        38. Zhu YC, Specht CA, Dittmer NT, Muthukrishnan S, Kanost MR, Kramer KJ. Sequence of a cDNA and expression of the gene encoding a putative epidermal chitin synthase of Manduca sexta. Insect Biochem Mol Biol. 2002 Nov; 32(11):1497-506.
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        39. Huang C, Nong SH, Mansour MK, Specht CA, Levitz SM. Purification and characterization of a second immunoreactive mannoprotein from Cryptococcus neoformans that stimulates T-Cell responses. Infect Immun. 2002 Oct; 70(10):5485-93.
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        40. Specht CA. Isolation of the B alpha and B beta mating-type loci of Schizophyllum commune. Curr Genet. 1995 Sep; 28(4):374-9.
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        41. Ullrich RC, Specht CA, Stankis MM, Yang H, Giasson L, Novotny CP. Molecular biology of mating-type determination in Schizophyllum commune. Genet Eng (N Y). 1991; 13:279-306.
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        42. Munoz-Rivas A, Specht CA, Drummond BJ, Froeliger E, Novotny CP, Ullrich RC. Transformation of the basidiomycete, Schizophyllum commune. Mol Gen Genet. 1986 Oct; 205(1):103-6.
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        43. Price M, Specht C, Boudreau RE, Shaw DE, Weller DL. Preliminary characterization of ribosomes of Entamoeba invadens. Mol Biochem Parasitol. 1983 Jun; 8(2):137-43.
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        44. Hanlon DP, Specht C, Ferm VH. The chemical status of cadmium ion in the placenta. Environ Res. 1982 Feb; 27(1):89-94.
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        45. Specht CA, DiRusso CC, Novotny CP, Ullrich RC. A method for extracting high-molecular-weight deoxyribonucleic acid from fungi. Anal Biochem. 1982 Jan 1; 119(1):158-63.
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        46. Weller DL, Richman A, Specht C. Ribonuclease of Entamoeba invadens. Mol Biochem Parasitol. 1981 Nov; 4(1-2):1-7.
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        47. Ullrich RC, Kohorn BD, Specht CA. Absence of short-period repetitive-sequence interspersion in the basidiomycete Schizophyllum commune. Chromosoma. 1980; 81(3):371-8.
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