Phagocytosis of Candida albicans by RNAi-Treated Drosophila S2 Cells

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Phagocytosis is a highly conserved aspect of innate immunity. Drosophila melanogaster has an innate immune system with many similarities to that of mammals and has been used to successfully model many aspects of innate immunity. The recent availability of Ribo Nucleic Acid interference (RNAi) libraries for Drosophila has made it possible to efficiently screen for genes important in aspects of innate immunity. We have screened an RNAi library representing 7216 fly genes conserved among metazoans to identify proteins required for the phagocytosis of the human fungal pathogen Candida albicans.