Manipulation of host metabolic fluxes by Leishmania represents a strategy to circumvent host immune response leading to long-term parasite survival and playing an important role in the pathology of infection. Specific Leishmania-dependent metabolic alterations in infected macrophages have been associated with resistance or susceptibility to infection. Thus, deciphering the multilevel interactions between metabolism and function on innate immune cells during infection offers considerable therapeutic or prophylactic promise. In this review, we provide an overview of recent literature highlighting Leishmania-macrophage interactions and discuss the potential of metabolic targeted therapies to shift the balance of dysfunctional, damaging, or non-productive responses to protective immune reactivity patterns towards pathogen elimination.
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