Fungal Infections

Species name/ common name:

Candida krusei

Teleomorph:

Issatchenkia orientalis)

Natural habitat

Isolated from the atmosphere, fruits, sewage, soil and foodstuffs.

Geography

Worldwide distribution.

Frequency

Fifth most frequent Candida species causing human infections worldwide. Percentage of C. krusei isolates from various studies ranged from 0.4-16.1% depending on site, with vaginal candidiasis being the lowest in isolation rate. In candidaemia, C. krusei has been found in 0-9% of cases, the higher rates often being associated with outbreaks.

Diseases

Disease due to Candida species is termed candidiasis. Most cases of C. krusei infection are in neutropenic patients and it has also been associated with outbreaks rarely. Candidaemia and invasive candidiasis are the most common types of infection, comprising about 1-2% of all cases of candidaemia.

Culture peculiarities

Rough white-to-yellow matt appearance on Sabouraud agar. It is the only Candida that can grow in vitamin-free media.

Antifungal resistance (intrinsic and acquired)

Inherently resistant to fluconazole. Reduced susceptibility to amphotericin B is common. Acquired resistance has been noted towards some azole drugs such as itraconazole and voriconazole. Azole cross-resistance in uncommon. C. krusei is susceptible to the echinocandins, with rare instances of acquired resistance noted.

Biosafety level 2.

This fungal species must be managed in a laboratory with safety containment level 2.

Industrial use

Wine and chocolate production. The latter uses C. krusei to ferment the Cacao beans to remove the bitter taste.

Images
 

Candida krusei on a RAT (rapid-assimilation-of-trehalose) plate.

The API biochemical readout for Candida krusei.

CHROMAgar™ image of Candida krusei

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