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Candidalysin is a potent trigger of alarmin and antimicrobial peptide release in epithelial cells

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Article number699
Issue number3
Early online date12 Mar 2020
Accepted/In press10 Mar 2020
E-pub ahead of print12 Mar 2020
PublishedMar 2020


King's Authors


Host released alarmins and antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) are highly effective as antifungal agents and inducers. Whilst some are expressed constitutively at mucosal tissues, the primary site of many infections, others are elicited in response to pathogens. In the context of Candida albicans, the fungal factors inducing release of these innate immune molecules are poorly defined. Herein, we identify candidalysin as a potent trigger of several key alarmins and AMPs known to possess potent anti-Candida functions. We also find extracellular ATP to be an important activator of candidalysin-induced epithelial signalling responses, namely EGFR and MAPK signaling, which mediate downstream innate immunity during oral epithelial infection. The data provide novel mechanistic insight into the induction of multiple key alarmins and AMPs from epithelial cells, important for antifungal defences against C. albicans.

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