This chapter discusses the biological and immunological aspects of innate defense mechanisms activated by (1,3)----lucans and related polysaccharides in invertebrates. (1,3)----lucans trigger several of the arms of the innate immunity responses of invertebrates. They are able to initiate cellular immune reactions, e.g. encapsulation and phagocytosis, induce synthesis of antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) and trigger coagulation and melanization cascades. These responses are initiated by specific recognition proteins for these polysaccharides present in the plasma or on the blood cells. As a result the animal is able to defend itself successfully against most fungal and oomycete pathogens, so that they do not pose a serious threat for most invertebrates. However, certain fungi, notably the entomopathogens, have evolved means to circumvent these defense measures and may cause fatal infections.
|Title of host publication
|Chemistry, Biochemistry, and Biology of 1-3 Beta Glucans and Related Polysaccharides
|Number of pages
|Published - 2009
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- General Biochemistry,Genetics and Molecular Biology