Published online Dec 30, 2011. doi: 10.5495/wjcid.v1.i1.4
Revised: October 17, 2011
Accepted: December 23, 2011
Published online: December 30, 2011
Fungal infections are increasing and their treatment is difficult, because the most widely used antifungal drugs are relatively toxic and have serious side effects. Therefore, interest has focused on safely applicable and clinically introduced non-antifungal drugs, which have potent antifungal activity. Statins were originally used as cholesterol lowering agents in human therapy, but recent studies demonstrated their in vitro antifungal activity against yeasts and filamentous fungi. This indicated their potential application, alone or in combination with other drugs, in the treatment of such diseases. Their effective concentrations are higher than their maximum achievable serum levels; therefore, the application of statins for the treatment of invasive fungal infections is only possible in combination with antifungal agents. These synergistic combinations establish a basis for a new safely applicable therapy. This review focuses on the antifungal activity of statins alone and in combination with antifungal and non-antifungal drugs, and their possible application in clinical therapy.