Novel taxa of thermally dimorphic systemic pathogens in the Ajellomycetaceae (Onygenales)

Karolina Dukik, Jose F. Muñoz, Yanping Jiang, Peiying Feng, Lynne Sigler, J. Benjamin Stielow, Joanna Freeke, Azadeh Jamalian, Bert Gerrits van den Ende, Juan Guillermo McEwen Ochoa, Oliver K. Clay, Ilan S. Schwartz, Nelesh P. Govender, Tsidiso G. Maphanga, Christina A. Cuomo, Leandro F. Moreno, Chris Kenyon, Andrew M. Borman, Sybren de Hoog

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

110 Scopus citations


Recent discoveries of novel systemic fungal pathogens with thermally dimorphic yeast-like phases have challenged the current taxonomy of the Ajellomycetaceae, a family currently comprising the genera Blastomyces, Emmonsia, Emmonsiellopsis, Helicocarpus, Histoplasma, Lacazia and Paracoccidioides. Our morphological, phylogenetic and phylogenomic analyses demonstrated species relationships and their specific phenotypes, clarified generic boundaries and provided the first annotated genome assemblies to support the description of two new species. A new genus, Emergomyces, accommodates Emmonsia pasteuriana as type species, and the new species Emergomyces africanus, the aetiological agent of case series of disseminated infections in South Africa. Both species produce small yeast cells that bud at a narrow base at 37°C and lack adiaspores, classically associated with the genus Emmonsia. Another novel dimorphic pathogen, producing broad-based budding cells at 37°C and occurring outside North America, proved to belong to the genus Blastomyces, and is described as Blastomyces percursus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)296-309
Number of pages14
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases


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