Fungal infection initially was recognized to cause dermatophytoses and thrush which affects the quality of life. Then subsequently pathogenic fungi were acknowledged to cause severe life threatening infections especially to those who are immunocompromised. Not only these infections increase morbidity and mortality, but they also cause more hospital stays and a financial burden. There are currently few antifungals in use, which show efficacy against fungal diseases such as polyenes, pyrimidine analogs, echinocandins and triazoles. Unfortunately, despite the development of many synthetic antifungals, the phenomenon of antifungal resistance is becoming a major concern in clinical practice especially during treatment of such patients. The resistance may be intrinsic, acquired or clinical. Other than that, synthetic antifungals are not only quite expensive but also have undesirable side effects and toxicity. Thus, apart from the development of new synthetic antifungals, the discovery of alternative treatment mainly from natural products are becoming more popular nowadays. In this paper, we briefly present an overview of the currently available antifungal drugs in use and their mechanism of action. Then the molecular mechanisms of antifungal resistance as well as factors causing clinical resistance will be detailed. Lastly, we also highlight the potential and advantages of antifungal derived from the natural product including their challenges.
Keywords: Fungal, Antifungal, antifungal resistant, mechanism of action, natural product.