Open Access Peer-reviewed

Invasive Fungal Infections: A Comprehensive Review

K V Ramana1,, Sabitha Kandi2, Venkata Bharatkumar P3, CH V Sharada4, Ratna Rao4, Ratna Mani4, Sanjeev D Rao1

1Department of Microbiology, Prathima Institute of Medical Sciences, Karimnagar, Andhrapradesh, India

2Department of Biochemistry, Chalmeda Anandarao Institute of Medical Sciences, Karimnagar, Andhrapradesh, India

3Department of Biochemistry, Vaidehi Institute of Medical Sciences, and Research Centre, Bangalore

4Department of Microbiology, Apollo Health City, Jubilee Hills, Hyderabad, Andhrapradesh, India

American Journal of Infectious Diseases and Microbiology. 2013, 1(4), 64-69. DOI: 10.12691/ajidm-1-4-2
Published online: August 25, 2017

Abstract

Fungi are a versatile group of microorganisms which can be freely present in the environment, be a part of the normal flora of human and animals and have the ability to cause mild superficial infections to severe life threatening invasive infections. Invasive fungal infections (IFI’s) are those infections where fungi have invaded in to the deep tissues and have established themselves resulting in prolonged illness. IFI’s usually are seen in debilitated and immunosuppressed individuals. There are many reports of IFI’s even in immunocompetent individuals thus making IFI’s a potential threat in the present century. Fungi are saprophytic microorganisms which have evolved mechanisms to survive in the mammalian hosts. Most of the fungal infections have been accidental and systemic fungal infections are a rarity that may result in high mortality. In systemic fungal infections the outcome of the disease depends more on the host factors rather than the fungal virulence. Immune response to fungal infections is a complex subject where in fungi invading goes unrecognised by the immune system and that invasive fungal infections can result in severe inflammatory reactions resulting in morbidity and mortality. From being uncommon during the earlier part of the 20th century when the world was plagued with bacterial epidemics, fungi have evolved as a major global health problem.

Keywords:

Invasive Fungal Infections (IFI’s), immunocompromised individuals, opportunistic pathogens, predisposing factors for IFI’s
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