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Curr Opin Microbiol. 2013 Dec;16(6):692-9. doi: 10.1016/j.mib.2013.07.012. Epub 2013 Aug 17.

The crucial role of iron uptake in Aspergillus fumigatus virulence.

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Department of Biological Sciences, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6, Canada. Electronic address:


Aspergillus fumigatus is an opportunistic fungal pathogen that causes life-threatening infections in immunocompromised individuals. Siderophore-mediated iron acquisition has been shown to be essential for virulence. New studies have revealed that enzymes involved in siderophore biosynthesis and uptake are compartmentalized in peroxisomes and endosome-like vesicles, respectively. Gene and protein expression studies have revealed coordinated regulation of siderophore and sterol metabolism linked to the common precursor mevalonate. Several A. fumigatus transcription factors have been identified that are unexpectedly involved in the regulation of iron homeostasis. New diagnostic and drug treatments are being developed that exploit the requirement of A. fumigatus for extracellular siderophores.

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