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Science. 2000 May 12;288(5468):1062-4.

A high-affinity iron permease essential for Candida albicans virulence.

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  • 1Microbial Collection and Screening Laboratory, Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology, 30 Medical Drive, Singapore 117609.


Microbial pathogens must compete with the iron-withholding defense systems of their host to acquire this essential nutrient. Here, two high-affinity iron permease genes, CaFTR1 and CaFTR2, were isolated. CaFTR1 expression was induced under iron-limited conditions and repressed when iron supply was sufficient, whereas the expression of CaFTR2 was regulated in a reversed manner. Mutants lacking CaFTR1 but not CaFTR2 exhibited a severe growth defect in iron-deficient medium and were unable to establish systemic infection in mice. Thus, CaFTR1-mediated iron-uptake mechanism constitutes a virulence factor of Candida albicans and may be a target for the development of anti-Candida therapies.

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