The fungal pathogen Candida albicans has a multilayered cell wall composed of an outer layer of proteins glycosylated with N- or O-linked mannosyl residues and an inner skeletal layer of β-glucans and chitin. We demonstrate that cytokine production by human mononuclear cells or murine macrophages was markedly reduced when stimulated by C. albicans mutants defective in mannosylation. Recognition of mannosyl residues was mediated by mannose receptor binding to N-linked mannosyl residues and by TLR4 binding to O-linked mannosyl residues. Residual cytokine production was mediated by recognition of β-glucan by the dectin-1/TLR2 receptor complex. C. albicans mutants with a cell wall defective in mannosyl residues were less virulent in experimental disseminated candidiasis and elicited reduced cytokine production in vivo. We concluded that recognition of C. albicans by monocytes/macrophages is mediated by 3 recognition systems of differing importance, each of which senses specific layers of the C. albicans cell wall.
Mihai G. Netea, Neil A.R. Gow, Carol A. Munro, Steven Bates, Claire Collins, Gerben Ferwerda, Richard P. Hobson, Gwyneth Bertram, H. Bleddyn Hughes, Trees Jansen, Liesbeth Jacobs, Ed T. Buurman, Karlijn Gijzen, David L. Williams, Ruurd Torensma, Alistair McKinnon, Donna M. MacCallum, Frank C. Odds, Jos W.M. Van der Meer, Alistair J.P. Brown, Bart Jan Kullberg