Revista Costarricense de Ciencias Médicas
versión impresa ISSN 0253-2948
Candida albicans is the most frequent pathogenic fungus associated with clinical infections. These infections have become more frequent as the population of immunossuppresed patients increased. Virulence factors of C. albicans include germ tube growth and phopholipase production. We studied 66 strains from clinical specimens (skin, nail, oral cavity, respiratory secretions, blood and urine). Each strain was evaluated by means of biochemical profile, germ tube production, chlamidospore production, growth at 37°C, actidione sensitivity and phospholipase activity. All strains produced germ tubes, micelium and growth at 37°C. Only two strains were sensitive to actidione. Phospholipase activity was high in 21% of the strains and intermediate in 43%. The strains from skin and nail had little phospholipase activity, while strains isolated from blood, respiratory secretions and corporal fluids had high activity phospholipase, suggesting a role for phospholipase in fungal spread in tissues.
Palabras llave : Candida albicans; virulence; pathogenic fungus; phospholipase.