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A. fumigatus responds to light : regulates fungal pathogenesis

Kevin Fuller et. al. analyse how light regulates growth, metabolism and stress resistance. Importantly the influence of light receptors potentially attenuates virulence via several genetic pathways.

News

This new look newsletter seems to have been well recieved as we have noted a marked increase in readership compared with previous months. Suitably encouraged we will persist with this briefer format.

The University of Manchester have announced a new Masters Degree Program for Medical Mycology starting in September 2013.

The Joint Genome Institute (JGI) welcomes nominations of genomes to be sequences in its Community Sequencing Program. For procedures how to submit a proposal, see here. The current fungal program can be found here.

Ongoing Studies

ECDC issues risk assessment on azole resistance in Aspergillus from environmental azole fungicide. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) issued a risk assessment report on azole resistance in Aspergillus spp. and its possible link to environmental usage of azole fungicides. NOTE: The number of patients with aspergillosis in Europe are estimated at 2,400,000 patients. We are interested in any comments you may have on this report - please send to admin@aspergillus.org.uk

Request for assistance from clinics in all five continents of the world with a study entitled “Pulmonary aspergillosis in kidney transplant recipients” supported by REIPI and GESITRA This study has two targets. The first target is to define some risk factors that allow the identification of a subgroup of kidney transplant recipients that would be candidates for antifungal prophylaxis active against Aspergillus. The second target is to find factors implicated in the outcome that were amenable to intervention.

Articles (68 new, 9 reviews)

NOTE access to all articles now require registration

Aspergillus fumigatus during stable state and exacerbations of COPD A. fumigatus sensitization is related to poor lung function. Positive filamentous fungal culture is a common feature of COPD. The clinical significance of this remains uncertain.

Preemptive treatment with voriconazole in lung transplant recipients Voriconazole preemptive treatment resulted in low incidence of invasive fungal infection (IFI) and IFI-related mortality.

Could vitamin d have a potential anti-inflammatory and anti-infective role in bronchiectasis? Randomized trials of vitamin D supplementation have shown effects that are likely to be protective against the development of bronchiectasis.

Evaluation of MycAssay™ Aspergillus for Diagnosis of Invasive Pulmonary Aspergillosis in Patients without Hematological Cancer MycAssayTM Aspergillus showed high sensitivity for the diagnosis of invasive aspergillosis in patients without hematological cancer. Sensitivity increased when multiple samples were used. Compared with fungal culture, PCR significantly reduced the time to diagnosis.

Index case for the fungal meningitis outbreak, United States We describe a case of persistent neutrophilic meningitis due to Aspergillus fumigatus in an immunocompetent man who had no evidence of sinopulmonary or cutaneous disease. An epidural glucocorticoid injection was identified as a potential route of entry for this organism into the central nervous system, and the case was reported to the state health department.

Reviews

Indoor fungal contamination: Health risks and measurement methods in hospitals, homes and workplaces This review presents the methods used to assess fungal contamination in these various environments, and discusses advantages and disadvantages for each method in consideration with different health risks.

Azole resistant Aspergillus fumigatus: An emerging problem  This emerging phenomenon stresses the urgent need for new preventive strategies (controlled use of antifungals and azole prophylaxis), new diagnostic strategies (early detection of resistance), and new therapeutic strategies in the management of A. fumigatus infections.

Courses

New Masters Degree in Medical Mycology at the University of Manchester starting in September 2013 This University of Manchester Medical Mycology Masters programme has been specifically designed for graduates who wish to develop their skills as medical mycologists. The programme aims to combine a significant level of theoretical understanding and practical skills.

Scientia Akademie organizes a short course Infections in Intensive Medicine in Potsdam, Germany, 3-4 May, 2013. The course will be held in the German language.

Veterinary

Corneal ulcers in horses Corneal ulceration is commonly diagnosed by equine veterinarians. A complete ophthalmic examination and fungal culture and sensitivity testing are necessary for all infected corneal ulcers. If fungal infection is suspected, antifungal therapy is a necessity. This is a short course published by VetLearn.

Assessment of Aspergillus fumigatus pathogenicity in aerosol-challenged chickens (Gallus gallus) belonging to two lineages 

Attention Clinicians!

You may like to contribute to the following collaborative groups who are collecting clinical data on these rare infections:

Fungiscope is a global rare fungal infection registry, a working group of ISHAM.

International Pediatric Fungal Network (PFN) collating information on treatment of pediatric patients

AspICU2 is a web-based multicentre observational survey to assess the burden of aspergillosis and other fungi in critically ill patients.

Public Health and Tropical Medicine Fellowships. It has come to our attention that there are a series of Fellowships funded by the Wellcome Trust available to applicants for low and middle income countries. We would like to encourage medical mycology applicants and would be happy to provide facilities and expertise for training at the National Aspergillosis Centre for applicants. We would like to identify applicants for these Fellowships and help facilitate application - please contact us atadmin@aspergillosis.org.uk

Patients

Patients and carers now have their own separate newsletter - please click here to access