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1.  Changing Trends of Vulvovaginal Candidiasis 
Introduction:
Vulvovaginal candidiasis is one of the most common infections seen in women.
Materials and Methods:
A total of 300 symptomatic women were studied. High vaginal swabs collected from each patient were processed by Gram stain, culture on Sabourauds dextrose agar and CHROM agar plates. Isolates were identified and speciated using conventional methods and by the color of the colonies on the CHROM agar. Antifungal susceptibility was performed by disc diffusion method for fluconazole (25 μg) and voriconazole (1 μg) discs as per Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) guidelines.
Results:
Vulvovaginal candidiasis was found in 53 (17.7%) of cases. Gram stain was positive in 22 (41.41%) of culture positives. Speciation of isolates by conventional and CHROM agar methods showed similar results. C. albicans 35 (66.0%) was the most common species isolated followed by C. tropicalis 14 (26.4%), C. krusei 2 (3.8%), C. parapsilosis and C. glabrata in 1 (1.9%) case each. Sensitivity to fluconazole was found in 91.4% of C. albicans, 57.1% of C. tropicalis and 50.0% of C. krusei. Sensitivity to voriconazole was seen in 91.4% of C. albicans, 85.7% of C. tropicalis and 50.0% of C. krusei. C. parapsilosis and C. glabrata were found sensitive only to voriconazole.
Conclusion:
CHROM agar has the advantage of being rapid, simple and cost effective method as compared to conventional methods in speciation of Candida. Routine susceptibility testing of Candida isolates help in selecting the most appropriate antifungal agent for vulvovaginal candidiasis.
doi:10.4103/0974-2727.129087
PMCID: PMC3969638  PMID: 24696557
CHROM agar; fluconazole; voriconazole; vulvovaginal candidiasis
2.  Antifungal Susceptibilities of Candida Species Causing Vulvovaginitis and Epidemiology of Recurrent Cases 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2005;43(5):2155-2162.
There are limited data regarding the antifungal susceptibility of yeast causing vulvovaginal candidiasis, since cultures are rarely performed. Susceptibility testing was performed on vaginal yeast isolates collected from January 1998 to March 2001 from 429 patients with suspected vulvovaginal candidiasis. The charts of 84 patients with multiple positive cultures were reviewed. The 593 yeast isolates were Candida albicans (n = 420), Candida glabrata (n = 112), Candida parapsilosis (n = 30), Candida krusei (n = 12), Saccharomyces cerevisiae ( n = 9), Candida tropicalis (n = 8), Candida lusitaniae (n = 1), and Trichosporon sp. (n = 1). Multiple species suggesting mixed infection were isolated from 27 cultures. Resistance to fluconazole and flucytosine was observed infrequently (3.7% and 3.0%); 16.2% of isolates were resistant to itraconazole (MIC ≥ 1 μg/ml). The four imidazoles (econazole, clotrimazole, miconazole, and ketoconazole) were active: 94.3 to 98.5% were susceptible at ≤1 μg/ml. Among different species, elevated fluconazole MICs (≥16 μg/ml) were only observed in C. glabrata (15.2% resistant [R], 51.8% susceptible-dose dependent [S-DD]), C. parapsilosis (3.3% S-DD), S. cerevisiae (11.1% S-DD), and C. krusei (50% S-DD, 41.7% R, considered intrinsically fluconazole resistant). Resistance to itraconazole was observed among C. glabrata (74.1%), C. krusei (58.3%), S. cerevisiae (55.6%), and C. parapsilosis (3.4%). Among 84 patients with recurrent episodes, non-albicans species were more common (42% versus 20%). A ≥4-fold rise in fluconazole MIC was observed in only one patient with C. parapsilosis. These results support the use of azoles for empirical therapy of uncomplicated candidal vulvovaginitis. Recurrent episodes are more often caused by non-albicans species, for which azole agents are less likely to be effective.
doi:10.1128/JCM.43.5.2155-2162.2005
PMCID: PMC1153777  PMID: 15872235
3.  Comparison of Enzymatic Method Rapid Yeast Plus System with RFLP-PCR for Identification of Isolated Yeast from Vulvovaginal Candidiasis 
Objective(s)
To compare two identification methods, i.e., restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP)-PCR analysis and enzymatic method Rapid TM Yeast Plus System to identify different species causing vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC).
Materials and Methods
Vaginal discharges of women who had attended the gynecology outpatient clinic of Mobini Hospital in Sabzevar, Iran were collected using cotton swabs and were cultured on Sabouraud dextrose agar. Isolated yeasts were identified by germ-tube testing and Rapid TM Yeast Plus System (Remel USA). For molecular identification, the isolated DNA was amplified with ITS1 and ITS4 universal primers and PCR products digested with the enzyme HpaІІ followed by agarose gel electrophoresis. Epidemiological and clinical features of women with respect to identified species were also evaluated.
Results
Out of 231 subjects enrolled, 62 VVC cases were detected. The isolated species were identified as follows: Candida albicans, 24 (38.7%), C. glabrata, 15 (24.2%), C. kefyr, 13 (21.0%) C. krusei, 9 (14.5%), and Saccharomyces cerevisiae, 1 (1.6%) by RFLP-PCR method; whereas findings by Rapid TM Yeast Plus System were C. albicans, 24 (38.7%), C. glabrata, 5 (8%), C. kefyr, 11 (17.7%) C. krusei, 2 (3.2%), S. cerevisiae, 9 (14.5%), and C. tropicalis, 6 (9.6%) as well as other nonpathogenic yeasts, 4 (6.9%).
Conclusion
Statistical comparison showed that there is no significant difference in identification of C. albicans by the two methods; although, in this study, it was not true about other species of yeasts. A correlation between clinical and laboratory findings is important as it enables us to administer an appropriate treatment on time.
PMCID: PMC3586841  PMID: 23493663
Candida; Iran; RFLP; Vulvovaginal candidiasis
4.  Can the diagnosis of recurrent vulvovaginal candidosis be improved by use of vaginal lavage samples and cultures on chromogenic agar? 
OBJECTIVE: To investigate if introital and vaginal flushing samples inoculated on chromogenic agar could increase the recovery rate and rapid identification of Candida and non-albicans species, as compared to culture of posterior vaginal fornix samples on Sabouraud agar and speciation of isolates by biochemical tests. METHODS: Samples from the introitus and the posterior vaginal fornix and vaginal lavage samples were collected from 91 women with a history suggestive of recurrent vulvovaginal candidosis (RVVC), and with a suspected new attack of the condition. The specimens were cultured on Sabouraud and CHROMagar. Speciation of yeast isolates was made on the chromogenic agar by API 32C kits and by an atomized system (Vitek). RESULTS: Forty-six (51%) women were positive for Candida from one or more of the samples. The introital cultures were positive in 43 (47%) women, both on Sabouraud and chromogenic agar. From the posterior vaginal fomix, 42 (46%) women were positive on the Sabouraud and 43 (47%) on chromogenic agar cultures, while the vaginal lavage cultures yielded Candida on those two media in 40 (44%) and 41 (45%) cases, respectively. Candida albicans was the most frequent species recovered, from 40 (87%) cases, followed by C. krusei in 4 (9%), C. glabrata in 2 (4%), and C. parapsilosis in one case. There was only one woman who had a mixed yeast infection, by C. albicans and C. krusei. There was only one discrepancy in the speciation as demonstrated by mean of chromogenic agar and API 32C kit. CONCLUSIONS: Neither cultures of introital nor of vaginal lavage samples increases the detection rate of Candida in RVVC cases as compared to cultures of posterior vaginal fornix samples. Use of chromogenic agar is a convenient and reliable means to detect colonization by Candida and differentiate between C. albicans and non-albicans species.
PMCID: PMC1784607  PMID: 12530485
5.  Chronic vulvovaginal candidiasis: characteristics of women with Candida albicans, C glabrata and no candida. 
Genitourinary Medicine  1995;71(5):304-307.
INTRODUCTION--Although as many as 5% of all women complain of chronic vulvovaginitis, little is known about these women. They may often be misdiagnosed and the role of vaginal yeast culture in diagnosing vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) among them has not been clearly defined. METHODS--To address these deficiencies, we tabulated initial diagnoses among new patients and conducted a medical record-based, unmatched case-control study among women reporting a history of chronic vulvovaginitis (four or more episodes in the past year) at a vulvovaginitis specialty clinic. Clinical presentation and medical history were compared for women who had a positive vaginal yeast culture for either Candida albicans or C glabrata, or who had a negative culture. RESULTS--One-third of the women had no apparent vulvovaginal disease at their initial visit. All women reported similar symptoms, except for an increased prevalence of painful sexual intercourse in women with C albicans (chi 2 p = 0.014 versus women with C glabrata and p < 0.001 versus women with no candida). Women with C glabrata were more likely to be non-white (chi 2 p = 0.071 compared with women with C albicans) and to report an underlying medical condition (chi 2 p < or = 0.001 versus both women with C albicans and women with no candida). Physical examination was normal only in women with no candida. C albicans cases were more likely to have positive potassium hydroxide microscopy (chi 2 p = 0.016) and a pH < or = 4.5 (chi 2 p = 0.011) than were C glabrata cases. CONCLUSIONS--These results suggest that reliance on symptoms and signs alone will result in significant misdiagnosis of chronic vulvovaginitis. Among women with VVC, subtle differences in clinical presentation do not reliably distinguish women with C albicans from those with C glabrata. Our study also indicates that vaginal yeast cultures, while not necessary for every patient, are valuable in confirming negative diagnoses, detecting microscopy false-negatives, and identifying non-C albicans isolates.
Images
PMCID: PMC1195546  PMID: 7490047
6.  Functional Genomic Analysis of Candida glabrata-Macrophage Interaction: Role of Chromatin Remodeling in Virulence 
PLoS Pathogens  2012;8(8):e1002863.
Fungal septicemia is an increasingly common complication of immunocompromised patients worldwide. Candida species are the leading cause of invasive mycoses with Candida glabrata being the second most frequently isolated Candida species from Intensive Care Unit patients. Despite its clinical importance, very little is known about the mechanisms that C. glabrata employs to survive the antimicrobial and immune response of the mammalian host. Here, to decipher the interaction of C. glabrata with the host immune cells, we have screened a library of 18,350 C. glabrata Tn7 insertion mutants for reduced survival in human THP-1 macrophages via signature-tagged mutagenesis approach. A total of 56 genes, belonging to diverse biological processes including chromatin organization and golgi vesicle transport, were identified which are required for survival and/or replication of C. glabrata in macrophages. We report for the first time that C. glabrata wild-type cells respond to the intracellular milieu of macrophage by modifying their chromatin structure and chromatin resistance to micrococcal nuclease digestion, altered epigenetic signature, decreased protein acetylation and increased cellular lysine deacetylase activity are the hall-marks of macrophage-internalized C. glabrata cells. Consistent with this, mutants defective in chromatin organization (Cgrsc3-aΔ, Cgrsc3-bΔ, Cgrsc3-aΔbΔ, Cgrtt109Δ) and DNA damage repair (Cgrtt107Δ, Cgsgs1Δ) showed attenuated virulence in the murine model of disseminated candidiasis. Further, genome-wide transcriptional profiling analysis on THP-1 macrophage-internalized yeasts revealed deregulation of energy metabolism in Cgrsc3-aΔ and Cgrtt109Δ mutants. Collectively, our findings establish chromatin remodeling as a central regulator of survival strategies which facilitates a reprogramming of cellular energy metabolism in macrophage-internalized C. glabrata cells and provide protection against DNA damage.
Author Summary
Hospital-acquired fungal infections pose a colossal health and economic challenge. Candida species are the leading cause of disseminated fungal infections and rank fourth among the most common nosocomial pathogens. C. glabrata, an emerging opportunistic fungal pathogen, is the second most frequently isolated Candida species after C. albicans from Intensive Care Unit patients world-wide. Limited information is available on the unique strategies that C. glabrata employs to evade and replicate in host phagocytic cells since it lacks the key virulence traits of C. albicans including hyphal formation and secreted proteolytic activity. In the current study, we have identified a total of 56 genes, via a functional genomics approach, which are required for survival and/or replication of C. glabrata in human macrophages. Our data demonstrates an essential role for chromatin remodeling in the intracellular survival of C. glabrata with ingested C. glabrata cells displaying transcriptionally active chromatin in early-phase, compact, closed chromatin in mid-stage, and open chromatin in the late-stage of macrophage internalization. Our findings identify novel fungal virulence determinants and potentially implicate epigenetic changes in the metabolic adaptation of fungal cells to the nutrient-poor host environment and the survival against oxidative stress-induced DNA damage.
doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1002863
PMCID: PMC3420920  PMID: 22916016
7.  Detection of FUR1 Gene in 5-Flucytosine Resistant Candida Isolates in Vaginal Candidiasis Patients 
Background and Aims: This study was done to detect the prevalence, risk factors for vaginal candidiasis in Chennai and to evaluate different methods for speciation of Candida isolates from vaginal candidiasis patients. This study was also aimed at detecting resistance patterns of Candida spp to common antifungals and at detecting mutant FUR1 genes in 5-Flucytosine (5 FC) resistant isolates.
Material and Methods: Two hundred clinically suspected vaginal candidiasis patients were screened for candidiasis and isolated Candida were speciated by standard morphological and biochemical tests (sugar fermentation and assimilation) and by using CHROM agar-Candida medium. Antifungal susceptibility was performed by disk diffusion method (CLSI M44-A) using fluconazole, itraconazole and 5FC disks. Five FC resistant isolates were subjected to PCR for detection of mutant FUR1 genes.
Results: A total of 72 (36%) Candida spp. were obtained. Vaginal candidiasis was more prevalent in 31-40 years age group and among those with poor genital hygiene and who wore tight fitting synthetic/nylon underclothes . C.albicans (35), C.tropicalis (8), C.glabrata (21), C.krusei (4) were identified by both carbohydrate assimilation test and by using CHROM agar-Candida medium. C.kefyr (2) and C.parapsilosis (2) could not be identified using CHROM agar-Candida. Resistance to fluconazole, itraconazole and 5-flucytosine was seen in 19.44%, 23.61% and 41.66% of the isolates respectively. Mutant FUR1 gene was detected in all the Candida spp that were resistant to 5FC.
Conclusion: C.albicans was the commonest species which caused vaginal candidiasis in Chennai. Though CHROM agar-candida medium is a useful differential isolation medium capable of early presumptive identification of Candida species, it could not identify C.kefyr and C.parapsilosis. Azole resistance was low in C. albicans but it was high in non-albicans Candida spp. Prevalence of primary resistance to 5-flucytosine was high in the strains studied and in all of them, it was mediated by mutant FUR1 gene.
doi:10.7860/JCDR/2013/6160.3574
PMCID: PMC3879835  PMID: 24392370
Candida; vaginitis; 5-flucytosine; FUR1 gene
8.  Clinical and microbiological characteristics of symptomatic vulvovaginal candidiasis in HIV-seropositive women. 
Genitourinary Medicine  1994;70(4):268-272.
OBJECTIVES--To evaluate the clinical and microbiological characteristics of symptomatic vaginal candidiasis in Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)-seropositive women attending a gynaecologic outpatient clinic for sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). DESIGN--Vaginal, rectal and oral specimens from cases and controls were cultured for Candida spp. SUBJECTS--Eighty-four consecutive HIV-seropositive and 384 HIV-seronegative women with clinical signs of vulvovaginitis. SETTING--A gynaecological out-patient clinic in Pavia, Italy. RESULTS--The overall prevalence of vaginal candidiasis was 61.9% (52/84) in the cases and 32.3% (124/384; p < .001) in the controls. After adjustment by logistic regression analysis for confounding factors (age at first intercourse, lifetime sex partners, new partner/s in the last 6 months, type of contraceptive used), HIV-seropositive patients were at higher risk for both Candida albicans (odds ratio = 2.5; 95% confidence interval 1.31-4.69; p = 0.006) and Torulopsis glabrata vaginitis (OR = 3.5; 95% CI = 1.05-11.60; p = 0.04) than controls. HIV-seropositive subjects had also increased rates of oral and rectal colonisation with Candida spp. Finally, the time to recurrence of vaginal infection was significantly shorter in HIV-seropositive patients than controls and was correlated with the severity of HIV-induced immunodepression. CONCLUSIONS--Vulvovaginal candidiasis is very common in HIV-seropositive women and its prevalence is correlated with the immunological status of the host. These patients have higher frequencies of Torulopsis glabrata vaginal infection and are more prone to recurrence than HIV-seronegative controls.
PMCID: PMC1195253  PMID: 7959713
9.  Vaginal yeasts in the era of "over the counter" antifungals 
Sexually Transmitted Infections  2000;76(6):437-438.
Objective: To establish whether there has been any rise in the prevalence of non-albicans Candida species isolated from vaginal swabs since the introduction of "over the counter" antifungal treatments.
Method: A retrospective review looking at all positive vaginal yeast isolates collected from women attending one genitourinary medicine clinic during the 6 year period from 1993 to 1998 inclusive. All positive vaginal yeast isolates were included, regardless of whether or not the patients were symptomatic. Isolates from HIV positive women were excluded from the analysis.
Result: No increase in non-albicans vaginal yeast isolates was shown during the period studied. The proportion of non-albicans yeasts remained constant at approximately 5% of the total yeasts isolated. The most common non-albicans yeast isolated was C glabrata.
Conclusion: There is no evidence from this study to suggest that the increasing use of "over the counter" antifungal treatment has selected for atypical, possibly inherently azole resistant, strains of vaginal yeasts in HIV seronegative women.
Key Words: vulvovaginal candidiasis; non-albicans species; antifungal drug resistance
doi:10.1136/sti.76.6.437
PMCID: PMC1744236  PMID: 11221124
10.  Comparison of Nucleic Acid Amplification Assays with BD Affirm VPIII for Diagnosis of Vaginitis in Symptomatic Women 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2013;51(11):3694-3699.
A commercially available, nonamplified, nucleic acid probe-based test system (BD Affirm VPIII) was compared with nucleic acid amplification (NAA)-based assays for determining the etiology of vaginitis in a cohort of 323 symptomatic women. First, a semiquantitative, multiplexed PCR assay (BV-PCR) and the Affirm VPIII Gardnerellavaginalis test were compared with a unified bacterial-vaginosis (BV) reference standard incorporating both Nugent Gram stain scores and Amsel clinical criteria. In the evaluable population of 305 patients, BV-PCR was 96.9% (191/197) sensitive and 92.6% specific (100/108) for BV, while Affirm VPIII was 90.1% sensitive (179/197) and 67.6% specific (73/108). Second, a multiplexed PCR assay detecting Candida albicans and Candida glabrata (CAN-PCR) was compared with the Affirm VPIII Candida test using a reference standard for vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) of yeast culture plus exclusion of alternate vaginitis etiologies. In the population evaluated (n = 102), CAN-PCR was 97.7% sensitive (42/43) and 93.2% specific (55/59) and Affirm VP III was 58.1% sensitive (25/43) and 100% specific (59/59) for VVC. Finally, the results of a commercial NAA test (GenProbe Aptima Trichomonas vaginalis assay; ATV) for T. vaginalis were compared with the Affirm VPIII Trichomonas vaginalis test. In the absence of an independent reference standard for trichomonal vaginitis (TV), a positive result in either assay was deemed to represent true infection. In the evaluable cohort of 388 patients, the sensitivity of ATV was 98.1% (53/54) versus 46.3% (25/54) for Affirm VPIII. The diagnostic accuracy of the combined NAA-based test construct was approximately 20 to 25% higher than that of the Affirm VPIII when modeled in populations with various prevalences of infectious vaginitis.
doi:10.1128/JCM.01537-13
PMCID: PMC3889753  PMID: 23985917
11.  Levels of (1→3)-β-D-glucan, Candida mannan and Candida DNA in serum samples of pediatric cancer patients colonized with Candida species 
BMC Infectious Diseases  2010;10:292.
Background
Surveillance cultures may be helpful in identifying patients at increased risk of developing invasive candidiasis. However, only scant information exists on the effect of Candida colonization on serum levels of diagnostic biomarkers. This prospective surveillance study determined the extent of Candida colonization among pediatric cancer patients and its possible impact on serum levels of (1-3)-β-D-glucan (BDG), Candida mannan and Candida DNA.
Methods
A total of 1075 swabs originating from oropharynx (n = 294), nostrils (n = 600), rectum (n = 28), groin (n = 50), ear (n = 54), and axilla (n = 49) of 63 pediatric cancer patients were cultured for the isolation of Candida spp. Patients yielding Candida spp. from any sites were considered as colonized. Serum samples were collected from patients at the time of first surveillance culture for detection of BDG by Fungitell kit and Candida mannan by Platelia Candida Ag. Candida DNA was detected by using panfungal primers and identification was carried out by using species-specific primers and DNA sequencing.
Results
Seventy-five (7.6%) swab cultures from 35 (55.5%) patients yielded Candida spp. These isolates included C. albicans (n = 62), C. dubliniensis (n = 8), C. glabrata and C. tropicalis (n = 2 each) and C. krusei (n = 1). Eleven patients were colonized at three or more sites. Eight of 36 serum samples from 6 colonized patients yielded BDG values higher than the currently recommended cut-off value of ≥80 pg/ml. However, none of the serum samples yielded Candida mannan levels ≥0.5 ng/ml and PCR test for Candida DNA was also negative in all the serum samples of colonized patients. During the study period, only two colonized patients subsequently developed candidemia due to C. tropicalis. Besides positive blood cultures, C. tropicalis DNA, BDG and Candida mannan were also detected in serum samples of both the patients.
Conclusions
The present study demonstrates that while mucosal colonization with Candida species in pediatric cancer patients is common, it does not give rise to diagnostically significant levels of Candida mannan or Candida DNA in serum specimens. However, BDG values may be higher than the cut-off value in some pediatric patients without clinical evidence of invasive Candida infection. The study suggests the utility of Candida mannan or Candida DNA in the diagnosis of invasive candidiasis, however, the BDG levels in pediatric cancer subjects should be interpreted with caution.
doi:10.1186/1471-2334-10-292
PMCID: PMC2988795  PMID: 20923575
12.  Differentiation Between Women With Vulvovaginal Symptoms Who are Positive or Negative for Candida Species by Culture 
Objective: To investigate whether clinical criteria could differentiate between women with vulvovaginitis who were culture positive or negative for vaginal Candida species.
Methods: Vulvovaginal specimens were obtained from 501 women with a vaginal discharge and/or pruritis. Clinical information and wet mount microscopy findings were obtained. All specimens were sent to a central laboratory for species identification.
Results: A positive culture for Candida species was obtained from 364 (72.7%) of the specimens. C. albicans was identified in 86.4% of the positive cultures, followed by C. glabrata in 4.5%, C. parapsilosis in 3.9%, C. tropicalis in 2.7% and other Candida species in 1.4%.Women with a positive Candida culture had an increased utilization of oral contraceptives (26.1% vs. 16.8%, p = 0.02) and antibiotics (8.2% vs. 0.7%, p = 0.001), and were more likely to be pregnant (9.1% vs. 3.6%, p = 0.04) than the culture-negative women. Dyspareunia was more frequent in women without Candida (38.0% vs. 28.3%, p = 0.03) while vaginal erythema (p = 0.01) was more common in women with a positive Candida culture.
Conclusions: Although quantitative differences were observed, the presence of vaginal Candida vulvovaginitis cannot be definitively identified by clinical criteria.
doi:10.1155/S1064744901000369
PMCID: PMC1784657  PMID: 11916179
13.  Surveillance of the prevalence, antibiotic susceptibility, and genotypic characterization of invasive candidiasis in a teaching hospital in China between 2006 to 2011 
BMC Infectious Diseases  2013;13:353.
Background
Invasive candidiasis is an important nosocomial infection associated with high mortality among immunosuppressive or critically ill patients. We described the incidence of invasive candidiasis in our hospital over 6 years and showed the antifungal susceptibility and genotypes of the isolated yeast.
Method
The yeast species were isolated on CHROMagar Candida medium and identified using an yeast identification card, followed by analysis of the D1/D2 domain of 26S rDNA. The susceptibilities of the isolates to flucytosine, amphotericin B, fluconazole, itraconazole, and voriconazole were tested using the ATB FUNGUS 3 system, and that to caspofungin was tested using E-test strips. C. albicans was genotyped using single-strand conformation polymorphism of CAI (Candida albicans I) microsatellite DNA combined with GeneScan data.
Results
From January 2006 to December 2011, a total of 259 isolates of invasive Candida spp. were obtained from 253 patients, among them 6 patients had multiple positive samples. Ninety-one stains were from blood and 168 from sterile fluids, accounting for 6.07% of all pathogens isolated in our hospital. Most of these strains were C. albicans (41.29% in blood/59.06% in sterile body fluids), followed by C. tropicalis (18.06%/25.72%), C. parapsilosis (17.42%/5.43%), C. glabrata (11.61%/3.99%) and other Candida spp. (11.61%/5.80%). Most Candida spp. were isolated from the ICU. The new species-specific CLSI candida MIC breakpoints were applied to these date. Resistance to fluconazole occurred in 6.6% of C. albicans isolates, 10.6% of C. tropicalis isolates and 15.0% of C. glabrata isolates. For the 136 C. albicans isolates, 54 CAI patterns were recognized. The C. albicans strains from blood or sterile body fluids showed no predominant CAI genotypes. C. albicans isolates from different samples from the same patient had the same genotype.
Conclusions
Invasive candidiasis has been commonly encountered in our hospital in the past 6 years, with increasing frequency of non-C. albicans. Resistance to fluconazole was highly predictive of resistance to voriconazole. CAI SSCP genotyping showed that all C. albicans strains were polymorphic. Invasive candidiasis were commonly endogenous infection.
doi:10.1186/1471-2334-13-353
PMCID: PMC3733982  PMID: 23899244
Invasive Candida; Epidemiology; Antifungal susceptibility; Genotyping
14.  Fluconazole susceptibility and ERG11 gene expression in vaginal candida species isolated from lagos Nigeria 
Fluconazole resistance is an important type of resistance in Candida because in most countries, fluconazole is the drug of choice for vulvovaginal candidiasis. Candida species resist fluconazole by various mechanisms but there is paucity of data on these in our environment. Such mechanisms include among others, over-expression of the ERG11 gene, which codes for synthesis of the target enzymes in the fungus. The aim of this study was to screen Candida spp. resistant to fluconazole for the expression of ERG11 gene. Fluconazole susceptibility test was performed on 28 clinical strains of Candida species previously obtained from students of a School of Nursing in Lagos, Nigeria. They were identified by API Candida, CHROMagar candida and germ tube test. Using 25 mcg discs, fluconazole susceptibility was determined by the disc diffusion method and results were interpreted in accordance with the Clinical Laboratory Standard Institute (CLSI) criteria; sensitive (S), resistant (R) and susceptible dose dependent (SDD). The R and SDD isolates were subsequently evaluated for the presence of ERG11 gene. Of the 28 clinical isolates, 14 were identified as C. albicans and six as C. tropicalis. The remaining isolates were identified as C. glabrata (2), C. famata (2) C. kefyr (2) one each of C. parapsilosis and C. guilliermondii respectively. In this study, 18 were susceptible (S) to fluconazole, eight were SDD and two were resistant to the antifungal agent. Out of the 14 C. albicans isolates, 12 were susceptible, one showed high level resistance and similar number showed susceptible dose dependence. ERG11 was detected in three susceptible dose dependent Candida species. This analysis demonstrates that susceptible dose dependence should not be overlooked as it may be associated with the presence of ERG11 gene and resistance to fluconazole. There is a need to consider routine antifungal susceptibility testing for Candida species causing vulvovaginitis.
PMCID: PMC3316451  PMID: 22493755
Fluconazole; ERG11 gene; Candida species; antifungal susceptibility
15.  Genital Candida Species Detected in Samples from Women in Melbourne, Australia, before and after Treatment with Antibiotics 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2006;44(9):3213-3217.
Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) remains a common cause of morbidity, with three-quarters of women affected during their lifetimes. Use of antibiotics is an acknowledged trigger for VVC, which adversely affects women's physical and emotional health. Knowledge of patterns of genital Candida species-level identification is important for management, as Candida species other than Candida albicans often fail first-line treatment. A community sample of women with no vaginal symptoms, and who were prescribed antibiotics, was recruited into this study, where the incidence of genital colonization by various Candida species was documented, as well as symptoms of VVC plus relevant associations, before and after treatment with antibiotics. Self-collected low vaginal swabs were taken prior to and 8 days after completion of antibiotic treatment, and data on various potential risk factors for VVC were collected simultaneously, with complete data being available for 233 participants. Baseline Candida species colonization was present in 21% of women (95% confidence intervals [CI], 17% to 27%), rising to 37% (95% CI, 31% to 44%) after antibiotic treatment. The primary species detected for either period was C. albicans (73%), with Candida glabrata detected in around 20%. Self-assessed proneness to VVC after antibiotic treatment and baseline colonization with Candida spp. were significantly associated with symptomatic VVC after antibiotic treatment. For microbiologically proven candidiasis, VVC symptoms had a sensitivity of 57% and a specificity of 91%. When physicians prescribe antibiotics, the history of risk of VVC is one issue that physicians should discuss with women, particularly those who are self-identified as being prone to VVC. Furthermore, we recommend that definitive microbiological diagnoses be made for women with recurrent symptoms or those failing initial treatment, to guide appropriate therapy.
doi:10.1128/JCM.00218-06
PMCID: PMC1594690  PMID: 16954250
16.  Direct Isolation of Candida spp. from Blood Cultures on the Chromogenic Medium CHROMagar Candida 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2003;41(6):2629-2632.
CHROMagar Candida is a selective and differential chromogenic medium that has been shown to be useful for identification of Candida albicans, Candida krusei, Candida tropicalis, and perhaps Candida glabrata. Colony morphology and color have been well defined when CHROMagar Candida has been used to isolate yeast directly from clinical specimens, including stool, urine, respiratory, vaginal, oropharyngeal, and esophageal sources. Direct isolation of yeast on CHROMagar Candida from blood cultures has not been evaluated. We evaluated whether the color and colony characteristics produced by Candida spp. on CHROMagar Candida were altered when yeasts were isolated directly from blood cultures. Fifty clinical isolates of Candida were inoculated into aerobic and anaerobic blood culture bottles and incubated at 35°C in an automated blood culture system. When growth was detected, an aliquot was removed and plated onto CHROMagar Candida. As a control, CHROMagar Candida plates were inoculated with the same isolate of yeast grown on Sabouraud dextrose agar simultaneously. No significant difference was detected in color or colony morphology between the blood and control isolates in any of the tested organisms. All C. albicans (n = 12), C. tropicalis (n = 12), C. glabrata (n = 9), and C. krusei (n = 5) isolates exhibited the expected species-specific colony characteristics and color, whether isolated directly from blood or from control cultures. CHROMagar Candida can be reliably used for direct isolation of yeast from blood cultures. Direct isolation could allow mycology laboratories to more rapidly identify Candida spp., enable clinicians to more quickly make antifungal agent selections, and potentially decrease patient morbidity and mortality.
doi:10.1128/JCM.41.6.2629-2632.2003
PMCID: PMC156566  PMID: 12791890
17.  Seminested PCR for Diagnosis of Candidemia: Comparison with Culture, Antigen Detection, and Biochemical Methods for Species Identification 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2002;40(7):2483-2489.
The rapid detection and identification of Candida species in clinical laboratories are extremely important for the management of patients with hematogenous candidiasis. The presently available culture and biochemical methods for detection and species identification of Candida are time-consuming and lack the required sensitivity and specificity. In this study, we have established a seminested PCR (snPCR) using universal and species-specific primers for detection of Candida species in serum specimens. The universal outer primers amplified the 3′ end of 5.8S ribosomal DNA (rDNA) and the 5′ end of 28S rDNA, including the internally transcribed spacer 2 (ITS2), generating 350- to 410-bp fragments from the four commonly encountered Candida species, viz., C. albicans, C. tropicalis, C. glabrata, and C. parapsilosis. The species-specific primers, complementary to unique sequences within the ITS2 of each test species, amplified species-specific DNA in the reamplification step of the snPCR. The sensitivity of Candida detection by snPCR in spiked serum specimens was close to 1 organism/ml. Evaluation of snPCR for specific identification of Candida species with 76 clinical Candida isolates showed 99% concordant results with the Vitek and/or ID32C yeast identification system. Further evaluation of snPCR for detection of Candida species in sera from culture-proven (n = 12), suspected (n = 16), and superficially colonized (n = 10) patients and healthy subjects (n = 12) showed that snPCR results were consistently negative with sera from healthy individuals and colonized patients. In culture-proven candidemia patients, the snPCR results were in full agreement with blood culture results with respect to both positivity and species identity. In addition, snPCR detected candidemia due to two Candida species in five patients, compared to three by blood culture. In the category of suspected candidemia with negative blood cultures for Candida, nine patients (56%) were positive by snPCR; two of them had dual infection with C. albicans and either C. tropicalis or C. glabrata. In conclusion, the snPCR developed in this study is specific and more sensitive than culture for the detection of Candida species in serum specimens. Moreover, the improved detection of cases of candidemia caused by more than one Candida species is an additional advantage.
doi:10.1128/JCM.40.7.2483-2489.2002
PMCID: PMC120535  PMID: 12089267
18.  Rapid identification of Candida species in blood cultures by a clinically useful PCR method. 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1997;35(6):1454-1459.
Widespread use of fluconazole for the prophylaxis and treatment of candidiasis has led to a reduction in the number of cases of candidemia caused by Candida albicans but has also resulted in the emergence of candidemias caused by innately fluconazole-resistant, non-C. albicans Candida species. Given the fulminant and rapidly fatal outcome of acute disseminated candidiasis, rapid identification of newly emerging Candida species in blood culture is critical for the implementation of appropriately targeted antifungal drug therapy. Therefore, we used a PCR-based assay to rapidly identify Candida species from positive blood culture bottles. This assay used fungus-specific, universal primers for DNA amplification and species-specific probes to identify C. albicans, C. krusei, C. parapsilosis, C. tropicalis, or C. glabrata amplicons. It also used a simpler and more rapid (1.5-h) sample preparation technique than those described previously and used detergent, heat, and mechanical breakage to recover Candida species DNA from blood cultures. A simple and rapid (3.5-h) enzyme immunosorbent assay (EIA)-based format was then used for amplicon detection. One hundred fifty blood culture bottles, including 73 positive blood culture bottle sets (aerobic and anaerobic) from 31 patients with candidemia, were tested. The combined PCR and EIA methods (PCR-EIA) correctly identified all Candida species in 73 blood culture bottle sets, including bottles containing bacteria coisolated with yeasts and 3 cultures of samples from patients with mixed candidemias originally identified as single-species infections by routine phenotypic identification methods. Species identification time was reduced from a mean of 3.5 days by routine phenotypic methods to 7 h by the PCR-EIA method. No false-positive results were obtained for patients with bacteremias (n = 18), artificially produced non-Candida fungemias (n = 3), or bottles with no growth (n = 20). Analytical sensitivity was 1 cell per 2-microl sample. This method is simpler and more rapid than previously described molecular identification methods, can identify all five of the most medically important Candida species, and has the potential to be automated for use in the clinical microbiology laboratory.
PMCID: PMC229766  PMID: 9163461
19.  Clinical and microbiological diagnosis of oral candidiasis 
Introduction: Candidiasis or oral candidiasis is the most frequent mucocutaneous mycosis of the oral cavity. It is produced by the genus Candida, which is found in the oral cavity of 53% of the general population as a common commensal organism. One hundred and fifty species have been isolated in the oral cavity, and 80% of the isolates correspond to Candida albicans, which can colonize the oral cavity alone or in combination with other species. Transformation from commensal organism to pathogen depends on the intervention of different predisposing factors that modify the microenvironment of the oral cavity and favor the appearance of opportunistic infection. The present study offers a literature review on the diagnosis of oral candidiasis, with the purpose of establishing when complementary microbiological techniques for the diagnosis of oral candidiasis should be used, and which techniques are most commonly employed in routine clinical practice in order to establish a definitive diagnosis. Materials and methods: A Medline-PubMed, Scopus and Cochrane search was made covering the last 10 years. Results: The diagnosis of oral candidiasis is fundamentally clinical. Microbiological techniques are used when the clinical diagnosis needs to be confirmed, for establishing a differential diagnosis with other diseases, and in cases characterized by resistance to antifungal drugs. Biopsies in turn are indicated in patients with hyperplastic candidiasis. Staining (10% KOH) and culture (Sabouraud dextrose agar) are the methods most commonly used for diagnosing primary candidiasis. Identification of the individual species of Candida is usually carried out with CHROMagar Candida®. For the diagnosis of invasive candidiasis, and in cases requiring differentiation between C. albicans and C. dubliniensis, use is made of immunological and genetic techniques such as ELISA and PCR.
Key words:Clinical, oral candidiasis, microbiology.
doi:10.4317/jced.51242
PMCID: PMC3892259  PMID: 24455095
20.  Investigations by Cell-Mediated Immunologic Tests and Therapeutic Trials With Thymopentin in Vaginal Mycoses 
Objective: According to unsatisfactory therapeutic results in patients with chronically recurrent vaginal candidosis, we investigated if immunologic patient factors could be found and treated.
Methods: In 42 women with chronically recurrent and 20 women with acute Candida albicans vulvovaginitis, as well as 14 women with C. glabrata vaginitis, the following investigations were carried out: identification of yeast species; quantification of T lymphocytes and their subpopulations in sera; proliferation tests of T lymphocytes in vitro; treatment of 18 patients with chronically recurrent vaginal candidosis with the synthetic T-lymphocyte- stimulator thymopentin; and, finally, control of the above-mentioned parameters in the clinical course.
Results: Women with C. albicans vulvovaginitis showed fewer T lymphocytes and subpopulations in the peripheral blood than healthy women. Only the number of non-specific killer (NK) cells, however, was significantly lower in cases of acute C. albicans vulvovaginitis. In women with C. glabrata vaginitis, the number of T lymphocytes in the blood was within the normal range. In vitro proliferation tests using mitogens, bacterial antigens, and commercially available candida antigens with and without addition of thymopentin were carried out on the T lymphocytes of women with chronically recurrent C. albicans vulvovaginitis. These tests revealed no significant differences compared with the other patients with C. albicans infections. The patients were treated with thymopentin. Those women who revealed an increase of initially low numbers of T-helper cells recovered from vaginal candidosis after thymopentin treatment.
Conclusions: The peripheral T lymphocytes may be diminished in patients with chronically recurrent C. albicans vaginitis, and immunologic treatment can reduce the relapse rate.
doi:10.1155/S1064744996000439
PMCID: PMC2364501  PMID: 18476097
21.  Susceptibility of clinical Candida species isolates to antifungal agents by E-test, Southern Iran: A five year study 
Iranian Journal of Microbiology  2011;3(4):183-188.
Background and Objectives
The incidence of fungal infections in immunocompromised patients, especially by Candida species, has increased in recent years. This study was designed to identify Candida species and determine antifungal susceptibility patterns of 595 yeast strains isolated from various clinical specimens.
Material and Methods
Identification of the isolates were determined by the API 20 C AUX kit and antifungal susceptibilities of the species to fluconazole, amphotericin B, ketoconazole, itraconazole, voriconazole, and caspofungin were determined by the agar-based E-test method.
Results
Candida albicans (48%) was the most frequently isolated species, followed by Candida kruzei (16.1%), Candida glabrata (13.5%), Candida kefyr (7.4%), Candida parapsilosis (4.8%), Candida tropicalis (1.7%) and other species (8.5%). Resistance varies depending on the species and the respective antifungal agents. Comparing the MIC90 for all the strains, the lower MIC90 was observed for caspofungin (0.5 µg/ml). The MIC90 for all Candida species were 64 µg/ml for fluconazole, 0.75 µg/ml for amphotericin B, 4 µg/ml for ketoconazole, 4 µg/ml for itraconazole, and 2 µg/ml for voriconazole.
Conclusions
Species definition and determination of antifungal susceptibility patterns are advised for the proper management and treatment of patients at risk for systemic candidiasis. Resistance to antifungal agents is an alarming sign for the emerging common nosocomial fungal infections.
PMCID: PMC3330181  PMID: 22530086
Candida; amphotericin B; itraconazole; voriconazole; antifungal susceptibility; E-test
22.  Multiplex Real-Time PCR Targeting the RNase P RNA Gene for Detection and Identification of Candida Species in Blood▿  
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  2007;45(3):874-880.
We have developed a single-tube multiplex real-time PCR method for the detection of the eight most common Candida species causing septicemia: Candida albicans, C. dubliniensis, C. famata, C. glabrata, C. guilliermondii, C. krusei, C. parapsilosis, and C. tropicalis. The method developed targets the RNase P RNA gene RPR1. Sequences of this gene were determined for seven of the Candida species and showed surprisingly large sequence variation. C. glabrata was found to have a gene that was five times longer gene than those of the other species, and the nucleotide sequence similarity between C. krusei and C. albicans was as low as 55%. The multiplex PCR contained three probes that enabled the specific detection of C. albicans, C. glabrata, and C. krusei and a fourth probe that allowed the general detection of the remaining species. The method was able to detect 1 to 10 genome copies when the detection limit was tested repeatedly for the four species C. albicans, C. glabrata, C. krusei, and C. guilliermondii. No significant difference in the detection limit was seen when the multiplex format was compared with single-species PCR, i.e., two primers and one probe. The method detected eight clinically relevant Candida species and did not react with other tested non-Candida species or human DNA. The assay was applied to 20 blood samples from nine patients and showed a sensitivity similar to that of culture.
doi:10.1128/JCM.01556-06
PMCID: PMC1829127  PMID: 17215340
23.  International Surveillance of Bloodstream Infections Due to Candida Species: Frequency of Occurrence and Antifungal Susceptibilities of Isolates Collected in 1997 in the United States, Canada, and South America for the SENTRY Program 
Journal of Clinical Microbiology  1998;36(7):1886-1889.
An international program of surveillance of bloodstream infections (BSIs) in the United States, Canada, and South America between January and December 1997 detected 306 episodes of candidemia in 34 medical centers (22 in the United States, 6 in Canada, and 6 in South America). Eighty percent of the BSIs were nosocomial and 50% occurred in patients hospitalized in an intensive care unit. Overall, 53.3% of the BSIs were due to Candida albicans, 15.7% were due to C. parapsilosis, 15.0% were due to C. glabrata, 7.8% were due to C. tropicalis, 2.0% were due to C. krusei, 0.7% were due to C. guilliermondii, and 5.8% were due to Candida spp. However, the distribution of species varied markedly by country. In the United States, 43.8% of BSIs were due to non-C. albicans species. C. glabrata was the most common non-C. albicans species in the United States. The proportion of non-C. albicans BSIs was slightly higher in Canada (47.5%), where C. parapsilosis, not C. glabrata, was the most common non-C. albicans species. C. albicans accounted for 40.5% of all BSIs in South America, followed by C. parapsilosis (38.1%) and C. tropicalis (11.9%). Only one BSI due to C. glabrata was observed in South American hospitals. Among the different species of Candida, resistance to fluconazole (MIC, ≥64 μg/ml) and itraconazole (MIC, ≥1.0 μg/ml) was observed with C. glabrata and C. krusei and was observed more rarely among other species. Isolates of C. albicans, C. parapsilosis, C. tropicalis, and C. guilliermondii were all highly susceptible to both fluconazole (99.4 to 100% susceptibility) and itraconazole (95.8 to 100% susceptibility). In contrast, 8.7% of C. glabrata isolates (MIC at which 90% of isolates are inhibited [MIC90], 32 μg/ml) and 100% of C. krusei isolates were resistant to fluconazole, and 36.9% of C. glabrata isolates (MIC90, 2.0 μg/ml) and 66.6% of C. krusei isolates were resistant to itraconazole. Within each species there were no geographic differences in susceptibility to fluconazole or itraconazole.
PMCID: PMC104946  PMID: 9650930
24.  Multi-species biofilm of Candida albicans and non-Candida albicans Candida species on acrylic substrate 
Objective
In polymicrobial biofilms bacteria extensively interact with Candida species, but the interaction among the different species of the Candida is yet to be completely evaluated. In the present study, the difference in biofilm formation ability of clinical isolates of four species of Candida in both single-species and multi-species combinations on the surface of dental acrylic resin strips was evaluated.
Material and Methods
The species of Candida, isolated from multiple species oral candidiasis of the neutropenic patients, were used for the experiment. Organisms were cultured on Sabouraud dextrose broth with 8% glucose (SDB). Biofilm production on the acrylic resins strips was determined by crystal violet assay. Student's t-test and ANOVA were used to compare in vitro biofilm formation for the individual species of Candida and its different multi-species combinations.
Results
In the present study, differences between the mean values of the biofilm-forming ability of individual species (C. glabrata>C. krusei>C. tropicalis>C. albicans) and in its multi-species' combinations (the highest for C. albicans with C. glabrata and the lowest for all the four species combination) were reported.
Conclusions
The findings of this study showed that biofilm-forming ability was found greater for non-Candida albicans Candida species (NCAC) than for C. albicans species with intra-species variation. Presence of C. albicans in multi-species biofilms increased, whereas; C. tropicalis decreased the biofilm production with all other NCAC species.
doi:10.1590/S1678-77572012000100013
PMCID: PMC3928775  PMID: 22437681
Oral candidiasis; Biofilms; Crystal violet; Assay
25.  Frequent detection of ‘azole’ resistant Candida species among late presenting AIDS patients in northwest Ethiopia 
Background
The chronic use of antifungal agents in the treatment of fungal infection in general and oropharyngeal candidiasis mainly in AIDS patient’s leads to the selection of strain resistant to these therapies and a shift in the spectrum of Candida species. This study determines the species diversity and in vitro susceptibility of Candida isolates from late presenting AIDS patients in northwest Ethiopia.
Methods
Two hundred and twenty one HIV/AIDS patients were assessed with a standardized evaluation form at enrolment. Oral rinses were cultured on CHROMagar plates at 37°C for 48 hours and Candida species identification were made following standard microbiological techniques. In vitro drug susceptibility tests were made using broth microdilution method.
Results
The colonization rate of Candida species was found to be 82.3% (177/215). C. albicans was the predominant species isolated from 139 (81%) patients but there was a diversity of other species. C. glabrata was the most frequent non-albicans species isolated in 22.5% (40/177) of the patients followed by C. tropicalis 14.1% (27/177), C. krusei 5.6% (10) and other unidentifiable Candida species 4% (7/177). Recurrent episodes of oropharyngeal candidiasis and previous exposure to antifungal drugs were found to be predisposing factors for colonization by non-albicans species. Irrespective of the Candida species identified 12.2% (11/90), 7.7% (7/90) and 4.7% (4) of the isolates were resistant to fluconazole, ketoconazole and itraconazole, respectively. In contrast, resistance to micafungin, amphotericin B and 5-Fluorocytosine was infrequent.
Conclusion
HIV/AIDS patients are orally colonized by single or multiple albicans and non- albicans Candida species that are frequently resistant to azoles and occasionally to amphotericin B, 5-Fluorocytosine and micafungin. These highlight the need for national surveillance for examining Candida epidemiology and resistance to antifungal drugs.
doi:10.1186/1471-2334-13-82
PMCID: PMC3577436  PMID: 23398783
Candida species diversity; In vitro susceptibility; Late presenters; Northwest Ethiopia

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