Exophiala dermatitidis isolates from various sources : Using alternative invertebrate host organisms (Caenorhabditis elegans and Galleria mellonella) to determine virulence

Olsowski, Maike;
GND
133245969
Affiliation
Universität Duisburg-Essen, Universitätsklinikum, Institut für Medizinische Mikrobiologie
Hoffmann, Frederike; Hain, Andrea;
GND
128176717
Kirchhoff, Lisa;
GND
172414962
LSF
15958
Theegarten, Dirk; Todt, Daniel Matthias;
GND
13572452X
Steinmann, Eike;
GND
133594114
LSF
49456
Buer, Jan;
GND
1155631684
LSF
47418
Rath, Peter;
GND
134133048
LSF
50322
Steinmann, Jörg

Exophiala dermatitidis causes chromoblastomycosis, phaeohyphomycosis and fatal infections of the central nervous system of patients with Asian background. It is also found in respiratory secretions from cystic fibrosis (CF) patients. In this study a variety of E. dermatitidis strains (isolates from Asia, environmental and CF) were characterized in their pathogenicity by survival analyzes using two different invertebrate host organisms, Caenorhabditis elegans and Galleria mellonella. Furthermore, the morphological development of hyphal formation was analyzed. E. dermatitidis exhibited pathogenicity in C. elegans. The virulence varied in a strain-dependent manner, but the nematodes were a limited model to study hyphal formation. Analysis of a melanin-deficient mutant (Mel-3) indicates that melanin plays a role during virulence processes in C. elegans. The strains isolated from Asian patients exhibited significantly higher virulence in G. mellonella compared to strains from other sources. Histological analyzes also revealed a higher potential of invasive hyphal growth in strains isolated from Asian patients. Interestingly, no significant difference was found in virulence between the Mel-3 mutant and their wild type counterpart during infection in G. mellonella. In conclusion, invasive hyphal formation of E. dermatitidis was associated with increased virulence. This work is the basis for future studies concerning E. dermatitidis virulence.

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