Invasive Aspergillosis and the Impact of Azole-resistance

Curr Fungal Infect Rep. 2023 Mar 18:1-10. doi: 10.1007/s12281-023-00459-z. Online ahead of print.


Purpose of review: IA (invasive aspergillosis) caused by azole-resistant strains has been associated with higher clinical burden and mortality rates. We review the current epidemiology, diagnostic, and therapeutic strategies of this clinical entity, with a special focus on patients with hematologic malignancies.

Recent findings: There is an increase of azole resistance in Aspergillus spp. worldwide, probably due to environmental pressure and the increase of long-term azole prophylaxis and treatment in immunocompromised patients (e.g., in hematopoietic stem cell transplant recipients). The therapeutic approaches are challenging, due to multidrug-resistant strains, drug interactions, side effects, and patient-related conditions.

Summary: Rapid recognition of resistant Aspergillus spp. strains is fundamental to initiate an appropriate antifungal regimen, above all for allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation recipients. Clearly, more studies are needed in order to better understand the resistance mechanisms and optimize the diagnostic methods to identify Aspergillus spp. resistance to the existing antifungal agents/classes. More data on the susceptibility profile of Aspergillus spp. against the new classes of antifungal agents may allow for better treatment options and improved clinical outcomes in the coming years. In the meantime, continuous surveillance studies to monitor the prevalence of environmental and patient prevalence of azole resistance among Aspergillus spp. is absolutely crucial.

Keywords: Azole-resistance; Cryptic Aspergillus species; Invasive aspergillosis.

Publication types

  • Review