Opportunities for the development of novel therapies based on host-microbial interactions

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Immune responses are fundamental for protecting against most infectious agents. However, there is now much evidence to suggest that the pathogenesis and tissue damage after infection are not usually related to the direct action of the replication of microorganisms, but instead to altered immune responses triggered after the contact with the pathogen. This review article discusses several mechanisms necessary for the host to protect against microbial infection and focuses in aspects that cause altered inflammation and drive immunopathology. These basic findings can ultimately reveal pathways amenable to host-directed therapy in adjunct to antimicrobial therapy for future improved control measures for many infectious diseases. Therefore, modulating the effects of inflammatory pathways may represent a new therapy during infection outcome and disease.

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