IL-17A is a proinflammatory cytokine produced by many types of innate immune cells and Th17 cells and is involved in the elimination of extracellularly growing microorganisms, yet the role of this cytokine in the host defense against intracellularly growing microorganisms is not well known. Cryptococcus deneoformans is an opportunistic intracellular growth fungal pathogen that frequently causes fatal meningoencephalitis in patients with impaired immune responses. In the current study, we analyzed the role of IL-17A in the host defense against C. deneoformans infection. IL-17A was quickly produced by γδT cells at an innate immune phase in infected lungs. In IL-17A gene-disrupted mice, clearance of this fungal pathogen and the host immune response mediated by Th1 cells were significantly accelerated in infected lungs compared with wild-type mice. Similarly, killing of this fungus and production of inducible NO synthase and TNF-α were significantly enhanced in IL-17A gene-disrupted mice. In addition, elimination of this fungal pathogen, Th1 response, and expression of IL-12Rβ2 and IFN-γ in NK and NKT cells were significantly suppressed by treatment with rIL-17A. The production of IL-12p40 and TNF-α from bone marrow-derived dendritic cells stimulated with C. deneoformans was significantly suppressed by rIL-17A. In addition, rIL-17A attenuated Th1 cell differentiation in splenocytes from transgenic mice highly expressing TCR for mannoprotein 98, a cryptococcal Ag, upon stimulation with recombinant mannoprotein 98. These data suggest that IL-17A may be involved in the negative regulation of the local host defense against C. deneoformans infection through suppression of the Th1 response.