Adaptation to the host

The most common host-associated Candida species is C. albicans. In predisposed hospitalized patients, Candida albicans can translocate from its commensal niche, the intestine, to the bloodstream. This exchange of a commensal environment to an environment where C. albicans causes systemic disease is paired with a sudden exposure to host serum proteins and the inflammatory response. Similarly, C. albicans can cause infections at mucosal surfaces, which are associated with changes in physiology and particularly initiation of inflammation. The research group, therefore, studies how the encounter of host immune mediators and serum proteins drives fungal adaptations that permit survival in the host and immune evasion or escape.


Austermeier S, Kasper L, Westman J, Gresnigt MS (2020) I want to break free - macrophage strategies to recognize and kill Candida albicans, and fungal counter-strategies to escape. Curr Opin Microbiol Jun 26(58), 15-23. PubMed PDF

Kumamoto CA, Gresnigt MS, Hube B. (2020) The Gut, the Bad and the Harmless: Candida Albicans as a Commensal and Opportunistic Pathogen in the Intestine Curr Opin Microbiol Jun 27(56), 7-15. PubMed PDF

Sophie Austermeier

Sophie Austermeier

Doctoral researcher

Phone: +49 3641 532-1389 Email:

Mark S Gresnigt

Dr. Mark S Gresnigt


Phone: +49 3641 532-1305 Email:

Pauline Porschitz

Pauline Porschitz