A phytopathogenic fungus responsible for lead disease in trees, hitherto only affecting the plant kingdom, has been identified for the first time in the upper respiratory tract of a human, a 61-year-old Indian mycologist in good health. So far.
What a challenge to the scientific community trying to figure out if Chondrostereum purpureum, which was considered harmless to humans, could now be a threat to the human race.
The patient suffered from chronic sore throat, hoarseness, cough, difficulty in swallowing, loss of appetite and fatigue for more than three months.
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In addition, there was an abscess in his trachea. It was able to accurately identify the presence of fungus. Conventional techniques used to identify fungi in the clinical environment did not make it possible to specify the suspect species, and it was necessary to resort to sequencing of its genome, which was carried out by the WHO Collaborating Center for Reference and Research on Fungi of Clinical Importance. ., in India. This is how we can see that it is Chondrosterium purpureum.
In wood, the bark becomes necrotic
This infection is the first in a human and, so far, this phytopathogenic fungus is known to attack only trees and shrubs of the Rosaceae family, causing lead disease. The effects of an infected tree are dull leaves, dry ends of branches, and the bark dies and turns brown.
For the patient, once his ulcer was cleaned, he was given an antifungal for 60 days. After repeated exposure to spores emitted by this fungus, an Indian mycologist observed no relapse during clinical trials after two years.
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