The large increase in the population of immunosuppressed patients, coupled with the limited efficacy of existing antifungals and rising resistance toward them, have dramatically highlighted the need to develop novel drugs for the treatment of invasive fungal infections. An attractive possibility is the identification of possible drug targets within essential fungal metabolic pathways not shared with humans. Here, we review the vitamin biosynthetic pathways (vitamins A–E, K) as candidates for the development of antifungals. We present a set of ranking criteria that identify the vitamin B2 (riboflavin), B5 (pantothenic acid), and B9 (folate) biosynthesis pathways as being particularly rich in new antifungal targets. We propose that recent scientific advances in the fields of drug design and fungal genomics have developed sufficiently to merit a renewed look at these pathways as promising sources for the development of novel classes of antifungals.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited