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Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2011 Sep;106(6):725-30.

Genotypes of Cryptococcus neoformans and Cryptococcus gattii as agents of endemic cryptococcosis in Teresina, Piauí (northeastern Brazil).

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  • 1Laboratório de Imunogenética e Biologia Molecular, Universidade Federal do Piauí, Teresina, PI, Brasil. liline-martins@uol.com.br


Throughout Brazil, Cryptococcus neoformans is the cause of cryptococcosis, whereas Cryptococcus gattii is endemic to the northern and northeastern states. In this study, the molecular types of 63 cryptococcal isolates recovered from the cerebrospinal fluid of meningitis patients diagnosed between 2008-2010 in Teresina, Piauí, Brazil, were analysed. Out of the 63 patients, 37 (58.7%) were human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-positive and 26 (41.3%) were HIV-negative. URA5-restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis identified 37/63 (58.7%) isolates as the C. neoformans VNI genotype, predominantly in HIV-positive patients (32/37, 86.5%), and 24/63 (38.1%) as the C. gattii VGII genotype, mostly in HIV-negative patients (21/26, 80.8%). The occurrence of C. gattii VGII in six apparently healthy children and in seven adolescents/young adults in this region reaffirms the endemic occurrence of C. gattii VGII-induced primary cryptococcosis and early cryptococcal infection. Lethality occurred in 18/37 (48.6%) of the HIV-positive subjects and in 13/26 (50%) of the HIV-negative patients. Our results provide new information on the molecular epidemiology of C. neoformans and C. gattii in Brazilian endemic areas.

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