C-Type Lectin Receptors in Antifungal Immunity

Christina Nikolakopoulou, Janet A. Willment, Gordon D. Brown*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

20 Citations (Scopus)


Most fungal species are harmless to humans and some exist as commensals on mucocutaneous surfaces. Yet many fungi are opportunistic pathogens, causing life-threatening invasive infections when the immune system becomes compromised. The fungal cell wall contains conserved pathogen-associated molecular patterns (PAMPs), which allow the immune system to distinguish between self (endogenous molecular patterns) and foreign material. Sensing of invasive microbial pathogens is achieved through recognition of PAMPs by pattern recognition receptors (PRRs). One of the predominant fungal-sensing PRRs is the C-type lectin receptor (CLR) family. These receptors bind to structures present on the fungal cell wall, eliciting various innate immune responses as well as shaping adaptive immunity. In this chapter, we specifically focus on the four major human fungal pathogens, Candida albicans, Aspergillus fumigatus, Cryptococcus neoformans and Pneumocystis jirovecii, reviewing our current understanding of the CLRs that are involved in their recognition and protection of the host.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication Lectin in Host Defense Against Microbial Infections
Subtitle of host publication Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
Number of pages30
ISBN (Electronic)978-981-15-1580-4
ISBN (Print)978-981-15-1579-8
Publication statusPublished - 10 Mar 2020

Publication series

NameAdvances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
ISSN (Print)0065-2598
ISSN (Electronic)2214-8019

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank the Wellcome Trust (102705) and the Medical Research Council Centre for Medical Mycology and the University of Exeter (MR/N006364/1) for funding.


  • Antifungal immunity
  • CLRs
  • Pathogenic fungi
  • PRRs


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