Chemistry and Mechanism of Action

Amphotericin B (Fungizone), a polyene antifungal drug produced by the actinomycete Streptomyces nodosus, consists of a large ring structure with both hydrophilic and lipophilic regions. Polyene antifungal drugs bind to the fungal cell membrane component ergosterol, leading to increased fungal cell membrane permeability and the loss of intracellular constituents. Amphotericin has a lesser affinity for the mammalian cell membrane component cholesterol, but this interaction does account for most adverse toxic effects associated with this drug.

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