Cladosporium species are ubiquitous, saprobic, dematiaceous fungi, only infrequently associated with human and animal opportunistic infections. We have studied a large set of Cladosporium isolates recovered from clinical samples in the United States to ascertain the predominant species there in light of recent taxonomic changes in this genus and to determine whether some could possibly be rare potential pathogens. A total of 92 isolates were identified using phenotypic and molecular methods, which included sequence analysis of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) region and a fragment of the large subunit (LSU) of the nuclear ribosomal DNA (rDNA), as well as fragments of the translation elongation factor 1 alpha (EF-1-) and actin (Act) genes. The most frequent species was Cladosporium halotolerans (14.8%), followed by C. tenuissimum (10.2%), C. subuliforme (5.7%), and C. pseudocladosporioides (4.5%). However, 39.8% of the isolates did not correspond to any known species and were deemed to comprise at least 17 new lineages for Cladosporium. The most frequent anatomic site of isolation was the respiratory tract (54.5%), followed by superficial (28.4%) and deep tissues and fluids (14.7%). Species of the two recently described cladosporiumlike genera Toxicocladosporium and Penidiella are reported for the first time from clinical samples. In vitro susceptibility testing of 92 isolates against nine antifungal drugs showed a variety of results but high activity overall for the azoles, echinocandins, and terbinafine.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Microbiology (medical)