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J. Fungi 2018, 4(4), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/jof4040125

An Invertebrate Host to Study Fungal Infections, Mycotoxins and Antifungal Drugs: Tenebrio molitor

1
Department of Microbiology, Center of Biological Science, State University of Londrina, Rodovia Celso Garcia Cid, Pr 445, Km 380, Londrina 86.057-970, Brazil
2
Aberdeen Fungal Group, Institute of Medical Sciences, 4.15 ext. 7162, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen AB24 3FX, Scotland
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 October 2018 / Revised: 3 November 2018 / Accepted: 7 November 2018 / Published: 12 November 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alternative Models for the Study of Fungal Host-Pathogen Interactions)
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Abstract

Faced with ethical conflict and social pressure, researchers have increasingly chosen to use alternative models over vertebrates in their research. Since the innate immune system is evolutionarily conserved in insects, the use of these animals in research is gaining ground. This review discusses Tenebrio molitor as a potential model host for the study of pathogenic fungi. Larvae of T. molitor are known as cereal pests and, in addition, are widely used as animal and human feed. A number of studies on mechanisms of the humoral system, especially in the synthesis of antimicrobial peptides, which have similar characteristics to vertebrates, have been performed. These studies demonstrate the potential of T. molitor larvae as a model host that can be used to study fungal virulence, mycotoxin effects, host immune responses to fungal infection, and the action of antifungal compounds. View Full-Text
Keywords: alternative method of infection; Candida spp. Cryptococcus spp.; invertebrate host model; mycotoxins; innate immunity; hemocytes; mealworm; tenecin; fungal infection alternative method of infection; Candida spp. Cryptococcus spp.; invertebrate host model; mycotoxins; innate immunity; hemocytes; mealworm; tenecin; fungal infection
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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 (CC BY 4.0).
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Canteri de Souza, P.; Custódio Caloni, C.; Wilson, D.; Sergio Almeida, R. An Invertebrate Host to Study Fungal Infections, Mycotoxins and Antifungal Drugs: Tenebrio molitor. J. Fungi 2018, 4, 125.

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