Host immune responses are required for the efficient control of cryptosporidiosis. Immunity against Cryptosporidium infection has been best studied in mice, where it is mediated by both innate and adaptive immune responses. Dendritic cells are the key link between innate and adaptive immunity and participate in the defense against Cryptosporidium infection. While the effector mechanism varies, both humans and mice rely on dendritic cells for sensing parasites and restricting infection. Recently, the use of mouse-adapted strains C. parvum and mouse-specific strain C. tyzzeri have provided tractable systems to study the role of dendritic cells in mice against this parasite. In this review, we provide an overview of recent advances in innate immunity acting during infection with Cryptosporidium with a major focus on the role of dendritic cells in the intestinal mucosa. Further work is required to understand the role of dendritic cells in the activation of T cells and to explore associated molecular mechanisms. The identification of Cryptosporidium antigen involved in the activation of Toll-like receptor signaling in dendritic cells during infection is also a matter of future study. The in-depth knowledge of immune responses in cryptosporidiosis will help develop targeted prophylactic and therapeutic interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1056
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2023


  • Cryptosporidium
  • dendritic cells
  • immune response
  • innate immunity
  • intestinal parasite


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