RKI – Division 16 Pathogens of fungal and parasitic infections and mycobacteriosis

Challenge Chief: Volker Rickerts

Cryptococcus neoformans and Cryptococcus gattii could be bred from bushes, fowl droppings, and soil These fungi could cause respiratory infections after inhalation. These are sometimes not identified due to nonspecific signs which can be often time-limited.

Cryptococci can persist within the physique and be transmitted by the bloodstream. Contributing components embrace virulence components corresponding to polysaccharide capsule and melanin pigment manufacturing. Cryptococcosis is often identified solely after fungi have unfold to the central nervous system, the place they trigger subacute meningitis, which is often deadly if left untreated.

  Four images of cryptococci, pathogens of a fungal infection From left to proper: Detection of a yeast cell encapsulated in nerve water in meningitis attributable to Cryptococcus gattii . Progress of melanized and unmixed C. neoformans from nerve water; Pc tomography of the lung in pneumonia attributable to C. neoformans; Histological detection of cryptococci within the mind in meningoencephalitis
Supply: RKI

It’s at present estimated that between 120,000 and 23,000 individuals worldwide die from cryptococcal illness annually, 75% of which is in southern Africa. The illness is chargeable for 15% of all AIDS-related deaths. In Germany, roughly 50 to 60 sufferers are handled in hospitals annually for cryptococcosis. Most are affected by HIV an infection, transplant sufferers, most cancers sufferers, diabetes mellitus, persistent lung and liver illness, and, extra not often, individuals with no underlying illness.

Most instances of cryptococcosis of the central nervous system are reported by C. neoformans var. Grubii brought on. In Central Europe, infections are extra frequent C. neoformans var neoformans . Along with central nervous system infections, they will additionally trigger native infections even after pores and skin harm, even in sufferers with out immune deficiency. Infections by C. gattii have been noticed for the primary time in tropical and subtropical areas. They’re now additionally regularly identified in temperate areas corresponding to North America. In Central Europe, solely distinctive indigenous instances have been reported to this point. As these pathogens infect wholesome individuals extra usually, the epidemiology of those infections is intently monitored.

We use molecular typing strategies to explain the epidemiology of cryptococcosis in Germany and to review the fungal determinants of various manifestations of the illness.

Collaborators:

  • Ilka McCormick Smith
  • Daniela Heckmann 19659014] Selb Regina
  • Srijita Ray
  • Jasmin Gerkrath
  • Nicole Norley

Sub-projects:

  • ] Molecular typing of medical isolates of C. neoformans and C. gattii
  • Isolation of C. neoformans and C. gattii from environmental samples
  • Virulence of cryptococci within the mannequin of an infection Galleria mellonella
  • in vitro resistance of C neoformans in opposition to antimycotics

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