Pathogenesis of Acanthamoeba infections

Microb Pathog. 2003 Jun;34(6):277-85. doi: 10.1016/s0882-4010(03)00061-5.


Acanthamoeba are free-living, harmless organisms, however, given the opportunity and the appropriate conditions, they can cause painful, sight-threatening as well as fatal infections and, thus, are considered opportunistic pathogens. Acanthamoeba infections have become increasingly important in the past few years due to increasing populations of contact lens users and AIDS patients. The mechanisms associated with the pathogenesis of Acanthamoeba tend to be highly complex, depending on parasite, host and the environmental factors. Elucidation of the biochemical, cellular and molecular basis of the pathogenesis of diseases caused by Acanthamoeba may lead to the development of therapeutic interventions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acanthamoeba / isolation & purification
  • Acanthamoeba / pathogenicity*
  • Acanthamoeba Keratitis / diagnosis
  • Acanthamoeba Keratitis / pathology
  • Amebiasis / microbiology*
  • Amebiasis / pathology
  • Animals
  • Contact Lenses / adverse effects
  • Cornea / parasitology
  • Cornea / pathology
  • Encephalitis / parasitology
  • Encephalitis / pathology
  • Epithelium, Corneal / parasitology
  • Epithelium, Corneal / ultrastructure
  • Granuloma / parasitology
  • Granuloma / pathology
  • Host-Parasite Interactions
  • Humans
  • Virulence Factors / classification


  • Virulence Factors