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Open Access Waterborne Exophiala species causing disease in cold-blooded animals

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The majority of mesophilic waterborne species of the black yeast genus Exophiala (Chaetothyriales) belong to a single clade judging from SSU rDNA data. Most taxa are also found to cause cutaneous or disseminated infections in cold-blooded, water animals, occasionally reaching epidemic proportions. Hosts are mainly fish, frogs, toads, turtles or crabs, all sharing smooth, moist or mucous skins and waterborne or amphibian lifestyles; occasionally superficial infections in humans are noted. Cold-blooded animals with strictly terrestrial life styles, such as reptiles and birds are missing. It is concluded that animals with moist skins, i.e. those being waterborne and those possessing sweat glands, are more susceptible to black yeast infection. Melanin and the ability to assimilate alkylbenzenes are purported general virulence factors. Thermotolerance influences the choice of host. Exophiala species in ocean water mostly have maximum growth temperatures below 30 °C, whereas those able to grow until 33(−36) °C are found in shallow waters and occasionally on humans. Tissue responses vary with the phylogenetic position of the host, the lower animals showing poor granulome formation. Species circumscriptions have been determined by multilocus analyses involving partial ITS, TEF1, BT2 and ACT1.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2011-12-31

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  • Persoonia aims to publish papers dealing with molecular phylogeny and evolution of fungi. A further aim is to promote fungal taxonomy by employing a polythetic approach to clarify the true phylogeny and relationships within the kingdom Fungi. The journal publishes high-quality papers elucidating known and novel fungal taxa at the DNA level, and also strives to present novel insights into evolutionary processes and relationships. Papers to be considered include research articles and reviews.

    Papers are published using a Fast Track system. This implies that the papers are immediately published online and freely available through the internet via this website. Volumes appear twice a year (June and December). From Volume 36 onwards (2016) hard copy volumes will only be made available through printing-on-demand. The issues can be ordered separately through the Publication Division of Naturalis Biodiversity Center; e-mail: [email protected]

    Persoonia is a journal published jointly by the Naturalis Biodiversity Center and the Westerdijk Fungal Biodiversity Institute.
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