Paramecium species ingest and kill the cells of the human pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans

Shalom Z. Frager, Cara J. Chrisman, Rachel Shakked, Arturo Casadevall

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

A fundamental question in the field of medical mycology is the origin of virulence in those fungal pathogens acquired directly from the environment. In recent years, it was proposed that the virulence of certain environmental animal-pathogenic microbes, such as Cryptococcus neoformans, originated from selection pressures caused by species-specific predation. In this study, we analyzed the interaction of C. neoformans with three Paramecium spp., all of which are ciliated mobile protists. In contrast to the interaction with amoebae, some Paramecium spp. rapidly ingested C. neoformans and killed the fungus. This study establishes yet another type of protist-fungal interaction supporting the notion that animal-pathogenic fungi in the environment are under constant selection by predation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)775-779
Number of pages5
JournalMedical mycology
Volume48
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2010
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Cryptoccocus neoformans
  • Environmental predators
  • Evolution
  • Paramecium
  • Virulence factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Paramecium species ingest and kill the cells of the human pathogenic fungus Cryptococcus neoformans'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this