Clinical Microbiology and Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 2020; 22(3):197-209
Invasive fungal infections continue to show steady growth among various patient populations, accompanied by high rates of both morbidity and attributive mortality. For the treatment of invasive mycoses, a few number of drugs are currently available, which include polyenes, azoles, echinocandins, allylamines and flucytosine. Among these groups, echinocandins – anidulafungin, caspofungin and mycafungin – represent a key class of antifungal drugs, primarily for the treatment of the most common form of systemic fungal infections – Invasive candidiasis. Possessing a unique mechanism of action that determines fungicidal activity against yeast pathogens, a predictable pharmacokinetics profile, and good safety profile, echinocandins have firmly taken the lead in the treatment of infections caused by Candida species. In addition, they are used in the treatment of refractory cases of invasive aspergillosis and for the prevention of invasive mycoses in selected patient populations. In this brief review, the main clinical and pharmacological characteristics of echinocandins and their positioning within the current versions of practical recommendations will be presented.