In good company: association between fungal glycans generates molecular complexes with unique functions
- 1Fundação Oswaldo Cruz – Fiocruz, Centro de Desenvolvimento Tecnológico em Saúde, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- 2Instituto de Microbiologia Professor Paulo de Góes, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
The biological properties of fungal immunogens have historically utilized testing of isolated molecules. Recent findings, however, indicate that fungal glycans differing in structure and function can interact to form hybrid complexes with unique properties. In the pathogenic yeast Cryptococcus neoformans, chitin-like molecules associate with capsular glucuronoxylomannan (GXM) to form functionally distinct glycan complexes. Such interactions between glycans that result in the formation of structures with different functions strongly suggest that additional molecular complexes with unknown properties may exist in fungal pathogens. Moreover, the identification of these novel complexes has stimulated the search of new immunogens with potential to protect human and animal hosts against systemic mycoses.
Keywords: chitin, Cryptococcus neoformans, glucuronoxylomannan, polysaccharides, glycan association
Citation: Rodrigues ML and Nimrichter L (2012) In good company: association between fungal glycans generates molecular complexes with unique functions. Front. Microbio. 3:249. doi: 10.3389/fmicb.2012.00249
Received: 22 May 2012; Paper pending published: 14 June 2012;
Accepted: 20 June 2012; Published online: 09 July 2012.
Copyright © 2012 Rodrigues and Nimrichter. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in other forums, provided the original authors and source are credited and subject to any copyright notices concerning any third-party graphics etc.
*Correspondence: Marcio L. Rodrigues, Centro de Desenvolvimento Tecnológico em Saúde (CDTS), Fiocruz. Av. Brasil 4.365, Casa Amarela, Manguinhos, 21040-360, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com