Eating the enemy within: Autophagy in infectious diseases

A. Orvedahl, B. Levine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

151 Scopus citations


Autophagy is emerging as a central component of antimicrobial host defense against diverse viral, bacterial, and parasitic infections. In addition to pathogen degradation, autophagy has other functions during infection such as innate and adaptive immune activation. As an important host defense pathway, microbes have also evolved mechanisms to evade, subvert, or exploit autophagy. Additionally, some fungal pathogens harness autophagy within their own cells to promote pathogenesis. This review will highlight our current understanding of autophagy in infection, focusing on the most recent advances in the field, and will discuss the potential implications of these studies in the design of anti-infective therapeutics.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)57-69
Number of pages13
JournalCell Death and Differentiation
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2009


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Molecular Biology

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