Caveolae as portals of entry for microbes

Microbes Infect. 2001 Jul;3(9):755-61. doi: 10.1016/s1286-4579(01)01423-x.


Many pathogens, including many traditionally extracellular microbes, now appear capable of entry into host cells with limited loss of viability. A portal of entry shared by some bacteria, bacterial toxins, viruses and parasites are caveolae (or lipid rafts), which are involved in the import and intracellular translocation of macromolecules in host cells. A requirement for caveolae-mediated endocytosis of microbes appears to be that the respective receptor is a constituent of caveolae or must move to caveolae following ligation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Bacteria / metabolism
  • Bacteria / pathogenicity*
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Caveolae* / microbiology
  • Caveolae* / parasitology
  • Caveolae* / virology
  • Eukaryota / pathogenicity*
  • Humans
  • Protozoan Infections
  • Virus Diseases / virology
  • Viruses / pathogenicity*