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Can J Microbiol. 1993 Oct;39(10):958-63.

Analysis of ploidy and sexual characteristics of natural isolates of Cryptococcus neoformans.

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Department of Fungal Infections, Chiba University, Inohana, Japan.


We report here an extensive examination of the ploidy of a basidiomycetous yeast. The ploidy of 34 strains of Cryptococcus neoformans var. neoformans, isolated mostly from Japanese patients, was determined by means of quantitative fluorescence microscopy after DNA staining with propidium iodide. The sexual characteristics of the strains including the two tester strains were as follows. Twenty-four strains were of the heterothallic alpha type, 1 was of the heterothallic a type, and 2 were self fertile; the remaining 7 showed no sexual response. The following strains were found to be haploid: the heterothallic a strain, 20 of the 24 heterothallic alpha strains, and 3 of the 7 asexual strains. Thus, the C. neoformans strains were mostly haploid, as the sexual response of this organism suggests. Both of the self-fertile strains and four of the seven asexual strains were diploid. Unexpectedly, 4 of the 24 heterothallic alpha strains were diploid.

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