The thermodimorphic pathogenic fungi Paracoccidioides brasiliensis and Paracoccidioides lutzii are the etiologic causes of paracoccidioidomycosis (PCM), the most prevalent systemic mycosis in Latin America. Galectin-3 (Gal-3), an animal galactoside-binding protein, modulates important roles during microbial infections, such as triggering a Th2-polarized immune response in PCM. Herein, we demonstrate that Gal-3 also plays other important roles in P. brasiliensis infection. We verified that Gal-3 levels are upregulated in human and mice infections and established that Gal-3 inhibited P. brasiliensis growth by inhibiting budding. Furthermore, Gal-3 affected disruption and internalization of extracellular vesicles (EVs) from P. brasiliensis by macrophages. Our results suggest important protective roles for Gal-3 in P. brasiliensis infection, indicating that increased Gal-3 production during P. brasiliensis infection may affect fungal growth and EV stability, thus promoting beneficial effects that could influence the course of PCM. The finding that Gal-3 has effects against P. brasiliensis together with previously reported effects against Cryptococcus neoformans suggests that molecule has a general antifungal role in innate defenses against fungal pathogens.
- Extracellular vesicles
- Fungal infection
- Paracoccidioides brasiliensis
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology