• Andreas H. Groll
  • Dominik Schrey
  • Thomas J. Walsh


Ever since the discovery that penicillin inhibits bacterial cell wall synthesis, developing equivalent agents to target the fungal cell wall has been a focus of antifungal drug development. Because the cell wall is essential to the vitality of fungal organisms and because its components are absent in the mammalian host, the fungal cell wall represents an ideal target for antifungal compounds. With considerable variation among different species, the gross macromolecular components of the cell wall of most fungi include chitin, alpha- or beta-linked glucans, and a variety of mannoproteins. The dynamics of the fungal cell wall are closely coordinated with cell growth and cell division, and the predominant function of the cell wall is to control the internal turgor of the cell. Disruption of the cell wall structure leads to osmotic instability and may ultimately result in the lysis of the fungal cell. The echinocandins are antifungal agents whose actions are directed against the major constituents of the fungal cell wall.


Invasive Aspergillosis Invasive Candidiasis Liposomal Amphotericin Fungal Cell Wall Febrile Neutropenic Patient 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andreas H. Groll
    • 1
  • Dominik Schrey
  • Thomas J. Walsh
  1. 1.Infectious Diseases Research Program, Department of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology and Center for Bone Marrow TransplantationChildren’s University HospitalMuensterGermany

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