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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2013  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 49-53

Characterisation of Malassezia species and their clinical correlation in a tertiary healthcare centre in South India


1 Department of Microbiology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India
2 Department of Dermatology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Anupma Jyoti Kindo
Department of Microbiology, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0972-1282.124586

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Genus Malassezia consists of 14 species of yeast like fungi that commonly causes superficial mycoses. It is a topic of intense interest but its fastidious nature restricts its research. Speciation gives us better treatment strategies especially with global concern over high Minimum Inhibitory Concentrations (MICs) to anti-fungal agents and emerging resistance. Aim of the study was to speciate Malassezia using phenotypic methods and to analyse the risk factors and its clinical correlation. The study was conducted at our university teaching hospital in south India over a one year period after approval by the Institutional Ethics Committee. A total of 105 patients, who had skin lesions resembling diseases caused by Malassezia, were included. The skin scrapings were subjected to 10% KOH wet mount. Culture was put up on Sabouraud's dextrose agar (SDA), with and without olive oil overlay (SDA-O) and modified Dixon's agar. Gram's stain, catalase test, aesculin hydrolysis, Tween assimilation, temperature tolerance and Tween 40-based precipitate production were done to characterise Malassezia species. The most common age was 20-40 years, with a slight female predominance (58.1%). Among the study group (n = 105), 87 had the prototype disease - pityriasis versicolour (PV). Out of 105 patients, 62.9% were fresh cases and 37.1% came with recurrences. The most common site to be affected by PV was the back, followed by chest. M. globosa was the most common species in both the hypopigmented and hyper pigmented groups. In three patients, two species were isolated from the same lesion. A sequential use of these simple tests helps greatly in a financially constrained set up for speciation of Malassezia in the laboratory.


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