Antifungal agents

Chapter Title

Antifungal agents


Document Type

Book Chapter


Philip Wexler


Fungi are a diverse, heterogeneous group of eukaryotes, serving as friend and foe of humans for centuries. Since ancient times, fungi have been used in food and beverage-making processes and, more recently, have been used for diverse antibiotics production. Fungal infections, or mycoses, are usually classified by the area of the body primarily affected, such as, superficial mycoses, subcutaneous mycoses, opportunistic mycoses, and systemic mycoses. Immunosuppression in general population is not uncommon due to diverse drug and chemical exposures, which has led to increased incidence of invasive fungal diseases. Inadequate antifungal armamentarium, compounded by drug-drug interactions, toxicity, and misc. constraints in administration routes are ongoing challenges for the medical community. The morbidity and mortality caused by invasive fungal infections are increasing across the globe due to increased incidence of community-acquired and nosocomial fungal infections, frequent use of immunomodulatory agents, and the emergence of drug-resistant fungal strains. It has become a top priority for the academia and pharmaceutical industries to discover and develop new antifungal agents to be able to combat drug resistance, and at the same time possess potential broad spectrum of activity with minimum toxicity. Efforts in the past few decades have yielded several classes of antifungal drugs with diverse formulations. Some of the noted antifungal agents are listed here: Anidulafungin, Amorolfine, Amphotericin B, Caspofungin, Ciclopirox, Clotrimazole, Fluconazole, Flucytosine, Griseofulvin, Itraconazole, Ketoconazole, Micafungin, Miconazole, Naftifine, Nystatin, Pimaricin, Posaconazole, Terbinafine, and Terconazole, which are extensively used in medicine.

Publication Date





Adverse effects, Antifungal agents, Azoles, Drug resistance, Echinocandins, Fungal infections, Pharmacokinetics, Polyenes, Pyrimidines, Therapeutic uses, Toxicity


Medicine and Health Sciences





Antifungal agents