Next Article in Journal
Invasive Candidiasis in Infants and Children: Recent Advances in Epidemiology, Diagnosis, and Treatment
Next Article in Special Issue
Current Status and Trends in Alternative Models to Study Fungal Pathogens
Previous Article in Journal
New Concepts in Diagnostics for Invasive Mycoses: Non-Culture-Based Methodologies
Previous Article in Special Issue
Immune Response of Galleria mellonella against Human Fungal Pathogens
Article Menu
Issue 1 (March) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessReview
J. Fungi 2019, 5(1), 10;

The ‘Amoeboid Predator-Fungal Animal Virulence’ Hypothesis

Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA
Department of Microbiology and Parasitology, Biomedical Institute, Fluminense Federal University, Niterói, Rio de Janeiro 24020-141, Brazil
Faculty of Ceilandia, University of Brasilia, Brasilia DF 70904-970, Brazil
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 26 December 2018 / Revised: 15 January 2019 / Accepted: 19 January 2019 / Published: 21 January 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alternative Models for the Study of Fungal Host-Pathogen Interactions)
PDF [1395 KB, uploaded 29 January 2019]


The observation that some aspects of amoeba-fungal interactions resemble animal phagocytic cell-fungal interactions, together with the finding that amoeba passage can enhance the virulence of some pathogenic fungi, has stimulated interest in the amoeba as a model system for the study of fungal virulence. Amoeba provide a relatively easy and cheap model system where multiple variables can be controlled for the study of fungi-protozoal (amoeba) interactions. Consequently, there have been significant efforts to study fungal–amoeba interactions in the laboratory, which have already provided new insights into the origin of fungal virulence as well as suggested new avenues for experimentation. In this essay we review the available literature, which highlights the varied nature of amoeba-fungal interactions and suggests some unsolved questions that are potential areas for future investigation. Overall, results from multiple independent groups support the ‘amoeboid predator–fungal animal virulence hypothesis’, which posits that fungal cell predation by amoeba can select for traits that also function during animal infection to promote their survival and thus contribute to virulence. View Full-Text
Keywords: fungi; amoeba; virulence; pathogenicity; Cryptococcus; aspergillus fungi; amoeba; virulence; pathogenicity; Cryptococcus; aspergillus

Figure 1

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).

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Casadevall, A.; Fu, M.S.; Guimaraes, A.J.; Albuquerque, P. The ‘Amoeboid Predator-Fungal Animal Virulence’ Hypothesis. J. Fungi 2019, 5, 10.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Related Articles

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics



[Return to top]
J. Fungi EISSN 2309-608X Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top