Pathogenesis of Invasive Pulmonary Aspergillosis

Ronen Ben-Ami, Dimitrios P. Kontoyiannis*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


The study of the pathogenesis of invasive pulmonary aspergillosis has advanced significantly over recent years because of scientific achievements on two fronts: sequencing of the genomes of three Aspergillus species and elucidation of the innate immune mechanisms involved in defence against Aspergillus infection. The principal events that lead to invasive aspergillosis take place in the alveolus, where inhaled conidia germinate into invading hyphae that penetrate the respiratory epithelium. Pulmonary innate immunity against Aspergillus infection consists of resident and recruited phagocytes, soluble immune factors, and antimicrobial proteins. Various Aspergillus traits, including the production of pigment, antioxidants, proteases, adhesins, siderophores, and mycotoxins, are implicated as potential virulence factors. The complex interplay amongst these factors, usually in the setting of depressed immunity, forms the basis for this medically important opportunistic mycosis.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAspergillosis
Subtitle of host publicationFrom Diagnosis to Prevention
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
Number of pages35
ISBN (Electronic)9789048124084
ISBN (Print)9789048124077
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Angioinvasion
  • Innate immunity
  • Mycotoxin
  • Virulence factor


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