Hyphae formation is a key step for fungal penetration into epithelial cells and escaping from macrophages or neutrophils. We found that 405 nm light-induced catalase deactivation results in the inhibition of hyphae growth in Candida albicans. The treatment is capable of inhibiting hyphae growth across multiple hyphae-producing Candida species. Metabolic studies on light-treated C. albicans reveal that light treatment results in a strong reduction in both lipid and protein metabolism. A significant decrease in unsaturated and saturated fatty acids was detected through mass spectroscopy, indicating that the suppression of hyphae through light-induced catalase deactivation may occur through inhibition of lipid metabolism. Initial in vivo tests indicate that blue light treatment can suppress the hyphae forming capabilities of C. albicans within murine abrasion infections. Together, these findings open new avenues for the treatment of Candida fungal infections by targeting their dimorphism.
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