Systems biology of host-fungus interactions: turning complexity into simplicity.
Modeling interactions between fungi and their hosts at the systems level requires a molecular understanding both of how the host orchestrates immune surveillance and tolerance, and how this activation, in turn, affects fungal adaptation and survival. The transition from the commensal to pathogenic state, and the co-evolution of fungal strains within their hosts, necessitates the molecular dissection of fungal traits responsible for these interactions. There has been a dramatic increase in publically available genome-wide resources addressing fungal pathophysiology and host-fungal immunology. The integration of these existing data and emerging large-scale technologies addressing host-pathogen interactions requires novel tools to connect genome-wide data sets and theoretical approaches with experimental validation so as to identify inherent and emerging properties of host-pathogen relationships and to obtain a holistic view of infectious processes. If successful, a better understanding of the immune response in health and microbial diseases will eventually emerge and pave the way for improved therapies. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.