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The interplay between gut bacteria and the yeast Candida albicans

Authors
  • Pérez, J. Christian1
  • 1 McGovern Medical School, the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston, USA
Type
Published Article
Journal
Gut Microbes
Publisher
Landes Bioscience
Publication Date
Sep 29, 2021
Volume
13
Issue
1
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1080/19490976.2021.1979877
PMID: 34586038
PMCID: PMC8489915
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
Disciplines
  • Review
License
Unknown

Abstract

The fungus Candida albicans is a ubiquitous member of the human gut microbiota. Hundreds or thousands of bacterial taxa reside together with this fungus in the intestine, creating a milieu with myriad opportunities for inter-kingdom interactions. Indeed, recent studies examining the broader composition – that is, monitoring not only bacteria but also the often neglected fungal component – of the gut microbiota hint that there are significant interdependencies between fungi and bacteria. Gut bacteria closely associate with C. albicans cells in the colon, break down and feed on complex sugars decorating the fungal cell wall, and shape the intestinal microhabitats occupied by the fungus. Peptidoglycan subunits released by bacteria upon antibiotic treatment can promote C. albicans dissemination from the intestine, seeding bloodstream infections that often become life-threatening. Elucidating the principles that govern the fungus-bacteria interplay may open the door to novel approaches to prevent C. albicans infections originating in the gut.

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