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J Biol Chem. 2015 Jul 31;290(31):18945-53. doi: 10.1074/jbc.R115.649129. Epub 2015 Jun 8.

Copper at the Fungal Pathogen-Host Axis.

Author information

1
From the Departments of Pharmacology & Cancer Biology and.
2
From the Departments of Pharmacology & Cancer Biology and Biochemistry, Duke University, School of Medicine, Durham, North Carolina 27710 dennis.thiele@duke.edu.

Abstract

Fungal infections are responsible for millions of human deaths annually. Copper, an essential but toxic trace element, plays an important role at the host-pathogen axis during infection. In this review, we describe how the host uses either Cu compartmentalization within innate immune cells or Cu sequestration in other infected host niches such as in the brain to combat fungal infections. We explore Cu toxicity mechanisms and the Cu homeostasis machinery that fungal pathogens bring into play to succeed in establishing an infection. Finally, we address recent approaches that manipulate Cu-dependent processes at the host-pathogen axis for antifungal drug development.

KEYWORDS:

copper; copper homeostasis; fungal pathogenesis; fungi; host-pathogen interaction; innate immunity; metal homeostasis; microbial pathogenesis; nutritional immunity

PMID:
26055724
PMCID:
PMC4521015
DOI:
10.1074/jbc.R115.649129
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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