Invasive Fungal Infections: Problems and Challenges for Developing New Antifungal Compounds

  • Thomas J. Walsh


Invasive fungal infections have emerged during the past two decades as important pathogens causing formidable morbidity and mortality in an increasingly diverse and progressively expanding population of immunocompromised patients. Those with the acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) constitute the most rapidly growing group of patients at risk for life-threatening mycoses, especially cryptococcal meningitis [61, 102], disseminated histoplasmosis [125, 125a], and coccidioidomycosis [13, 50a]. These infections are generally community acquired and often develop as a consequence of reactivation of latent infection. Oropharyngeal and esophageal candidiasis are common infections in approximately one-half of all children and adults with AIDS [118, 118]. Selik et al. described features of the first 30,632 AIDS patients in the United States reported to the Centers for Disease Control [94]. Esophageal candidiasis occurred with similar frequency in both populations, being found in 15.4% of 350 children (age <13 years) with AIDS in comparison to 10.6% of all AIDS patients and 8.5–16.8% of various subpopulations of adults with AIDS.


Antifungal Therapy Invasive Aspergillosis Acquire Immune Deficiency Syndrome Invasive Fungal Infection Invasive Candidiasis 
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© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1992

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  • Thomas J. Walsh

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