Patients with recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis exhibit a decrease in both the fungicidal activity of neutrophils and the proliferation of peripheral blood mononuclear cells

Jeiser Marcelo Consuegra-Asprilla, Carolina Rodríguez-Echeverri, Daniela Herrera Posada, Beatriz L. Gómez, Ángel González

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Recurrent vulvovaginal candidiasis (RVVC) is an important and underestimated fungal infection. Objective: We aimed to determine the fungicidal and proliferative capacities of neutrophils and peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs), respectively and the clinical and microbiological characteristics of a cohort of Colombian patients diagnosed with RVVC. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted. A total of 66 women were included (40 diagnosed with RVVC and 26 healthy women [HW]). Demographic and clinical data were recorded. Vaginal fluid samples were obtained for isolation, identification and antifungal susceptibility testing of Candida species using selective culture media and the Vitek 2.0® system. Blood samples were also obtained to evaluate cell subpopulations; furthermore, neutrophils and PBMCs were isolated to determine their fungicidal and proliferative capacities, respectively. Results: The median age was 29 (IQR: 34–23) for RVVC and 24 (IQR: 30–23) for HW. Only two species of the genus Candida were identified: Candida albicans (92.5%) and Candida lusitaniae (7.5%). Resistance to fluconazole, voriconazole, flucytosine and amphotericin B was observed on six C. albicans isolates and one C. lusitaniae isolate. Only the family history of vulvovaginal candidiasis was associated with RVVC occurrence. The RVVC group exhibited a significantly higher number of neutrophils but with lower fungicidal activity in comparison to HW; likewise, PBMCs from RVVC patients presented a lower proliferation index when stimulated with C. albicans. Conclusion: Contrary to what has been reported worldwide, in Colombian patients with RVVC, C. albicans was the main isolated species without increased antifungal resistance. The diminished fungicidal and proliferative capacities of neutrophils and PBMCs, respectively, could suggest a possible alteration in the innate and adaptive immune responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere13720
JournalMycoses
Volume67
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases

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