An environmental sampling survey was carried out in different areas of Bogot, Colombia, to obtain isolates of members of the Cryptococcus neoformans/C. gattii species complex from Corymbia ficifolia trees. During a 6-month period in 2007, 128 samples consisting of bark, soil around trunk bases, detritus, seeds and flowers were collected from 91 trees and processed according to standard procedures. The molecular type was determined using URA5 restriction fragment length polymorphism (RFLP) analysis and the mating type was established by PCR using specific primers for Mfα and Mfa C. gattii was isolated from 15 of the 128 (11.7%) samples, of which three (20%) were recovered from the red flower extract and the remaining 12 from C. ficifolia detritus. URA5 RFLP analysis revealed that all 15 isolates belonged to the molecular type VGIII and mating type specific PCR revealed that all were mating type a. The isolation of C. gattii from C. ficifolia represents an important finding since this is the first report revealing C. ficifolia as a habitat for C. gattii and adds additional information to the ever growing spectrum of tree species from which C. gattii can be recovered.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Infectious Diseases