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Microbiology and Immunology

Microbiology and Immunology

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Published by: chiprios on Feb 28, 2011
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Rhodotorula (family Cryptococcaceae, subfamily Rhodoto-ruloideae)
resembles Cryptococcus in rate of growth, colony topography, cell
size and shape, occasional rudimentary pseudomycelium, presence of
capsule, ability to split urea, and absence of fermentation. Its
nonpathogenicity, different serotype, and conspkuous carotenoid pigment



have maintained Rhodotorula as a distinct genus. Cryptococcus,
furthermore, can use inositol, invade human and animal tissues, and
kill (c. neoformans). Rhodotorula is a normal symbiont of moist skin
(due to climate or to the patient's abnormal physiology); R. rubra
and R. glutinis have been reported rarely to cause
septicemia, meningitis, and a chronic skin infection. Recently, R. pallida
and R. marina were implicated in an invasive infection of a leukemia
patient. These two species had not been reported to cause human disease
before this. Occasionally fungemia associated with the contamination
\)f plastic tubing left in place during prolonged intravenous therapy
will resolve without antifungal therapy when the catheter is removed.
Rhodotorula spp. are also cultured readily from shower curtains, bathtub-
wall junctions, and' the rubber tips and handles of toothbrushes, if not
properly aerated.

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