, Volume 158, Issue 1, pp 25-31

Serotype and PCR-fingerprints of Clinical and Environmental isolates of Cryptococcus neoformans in Chiang Mai, Thailand

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From May 1999 to April 2000, serotypes of clinical and environmental isolates of Cryptococcus neoformans were studied in Chiang Mai province, northern Thailand. Three hundred and eighty-five environmental samples, of which 100 were dove droppings, 55 pigeon droppings and 230 eucalyptus flower, were collected from7 Amphoes in Chiang Mai. C. neoformans was isolated from 45 of 100 (45.0%) dove dropping samples, 9 of 55 (16.4%) pigeon dropping samples and 2 of 230 (0.9%) eucalyptus flower samples. Serotypes of 56 environmental isolates and 75 clinical isolates ofC. neoformans, obtained during the same period, were determined by the slide agglutination test. Fifty-six environmental and 74 clinical isolates belonged to C. neoformans serotype A (C. neoformans var. grubii), and only one clinical isolate belonged to C. neoformans serotype AD. The isolation of C. neoformans var. grubii from eucalyptus flower samples suggests contamination of avian droppings. PCR-fingerprinting, using (GACA)4 as a primer, discriminated 131 clinical and environmental isolates into 2 groups (group I and II). Seventy-five clinical and 54 environmental isolates were of group I, which had two major specific bands of approximately 1,250 and 960 base pairs. Two environmental isolates, one from pigeon excreta and the other from a eucalyptus flower sample were of group II, which had two major specific bands of approximately 1,180 and 500 base pairs.

This revised version was published online in October 2005 with corrections to the Cover Date.