Article: article from journal or magazin.
Mechanisms of skin adherence and invasion by dermatophytes.
Publication types: JOURNAL ARTICLE
Dermatophytes are keratinophilic fungi that can be pathogenic for humans and animals by infecting the stratum corneum, nails, claws or hair. The first infection step consists of adherence of arthroconidia to the stratum corneum. The mechanisms and the kinetics of adherence have been investigated using different in vitro and ex vivo experimental models, most notably showing the role of a secreted serine protease from Microsporum canis in fungal adherence to feline corneocytes. After germination of the arthroconidia, dermatophytes invade keratinised structures that have to be digested into short peptides and amino acids to be assimilated. Although many proteases, including keratinolytic ones, have been characterised, the understanding of dermatophyte invasion mechanisms remains speculative. To date, research on mechanisms of dermatophyte infection focused mainly on both secreted endoproteases and exoproteases, but their precise role in both fungal adherence and skin invasion should be further explored.
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