Caspofungin inhibits the synthesis of beta-(1, 3)-D-glucan, an essential component of the cell wall of Aspergillus species and Candida species. beta-(1, 3)-D-glucan is not present in mammalian cells. The primary target is beta-(1, 3)-glucan synthase.
Caspofungin is an antifungal drug, and belongs to a new class termed the echinocandins. It is used to treat Aspergillus and Candida infection, and works by inhibiting cell wall synthesis. Antifungals in the echinocandin class inhibit the synthesis of glucan in the cell wall, probably via the enzyme 1, 3-beta glucan synthase. There is a potential for resistance development to occur, however in vitro resistance development to Caspofungin by Aspergillus species has not been studied.
Metabolized slowly by hydrolysis and N-acetylation
Side effects include rash, swelling, and nausea (rare)