Cutaneous model of invasive aspergillosis

Ronen Ben-Ami, Russell E. Lewis, Konstantinos Leventakos, Jean Paul Latgé, Dimitrios P. Kontoyiannis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Cutaneous models have proven useful in studies of the pathogenesis and treatment of Gram-positive bacterial infections. Because cutaneous invasive aspergillosis (IA) occurs in the clinical setting, we sought to develop a nonlethal murine cutaneous model of IA. We induced cutaneous IA in cyclophosphamide-treated nude BALB/c mice by subcutaneous injection of Aspergillus fumigatus conidia. Skin lesion areas correlated well with tissue fungal burdens, allowing dynamic visual monitoring of cutaneous infections. The cutaneous model accurately reflected alterations in A. fumigatus pathogenicity resulting from deletions of recognized virulence genes (pabaA, sidA, and pksP). Moreover, analysis of the roles of conidial and mycelial catalases revealed that the former is required for the initiation of cutaneous aspergillosis, whereas the latter contributes to its propagation. Finally, posaconazole treatment reduced skin lesion areas relative to those of untreated and fluconazole-treated controls. This novel cutaneous model system should be applicable to comparative studies of the pathogenesis, treatment, and tissue specificity of IA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1848-1854
Number of pages7
JournalAntimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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