The existence of a macrofphage β-glucan-binding receptor had been recognized for about three decades before the identification of Dectin-1 in 2001 as the receptor for these carbohydrates (Brown and Gordon 2001). Many of the immunomodulatory properties attributed to β-glucans were previously ascribed to the Complement Receptor (CR-3, Mac-1, CD11b/CD18), which was thought to directly recognize β-glucan, among many other ligands. Although additional receptors recognizing β-glucan have been identified, such as lactosylceramide, Langerin, and the scavenger receptors CD5, CL-P1, SCARF1, and CD36, the generation of Dectin-1 knockout (KO) mice has demonstrated that β-glucan recognition by this receptor is central to the immune response to many fungal pathogens. From data generated over the past decade, it is now known that Dectin-1 has a pivotal role in the innate immune protective response to fungi, and that this receptor can...
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