Domestic Birds as Source of Cryptococcus deuterogattii (AFLP6/VGII): Potential Risk for Cryptococcosis

Nathan P Siqueira, Olívia C Favalessa, Fernanda H Maruyama, Valéria Dutra, Luciano Nakazato, Ferry Hagen, Rosane C Hahn

Research output: Contribution to journal/periodicalArticleScientificpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Cryptococcosis is an infection caused by encapsulated basidiomycetous yeasts belonging to the Cryptococcus neoformans/Cryptococcus gattii species complexes. It is acquired through inhalation of infectious propagules, often resulting in meningitis and meningoencephalitis. The ecological niche of these agents is a wide variety of trees species, as well as pigeon, parrot and passerine excreta. The objective of this study was to isolate Cryptococcus yeasts from excreta of commercially traded parrots and passerines. The 237 samples were collected between October 2018 and April 2019 and processed using conventional methodologies. Nineteen colonies with a dark brown phenotype, caused by phenol oxidase activity, were isolated, suggesting the presence of pathogenic Cryptococcus yeasts. All isolates tested positive for urease activity. URA5-RFLP fingerprinting identified 14 isolates (68.4%) as C. neoformans (genotype AFLP1/VNI) and 5 (26.3%) as C. deuterogattii (genotype AFLP6/VGII). Multi-locus sequence typing was applied to investigate the relatedness of the C. deuterogattii isolates with those collected globally, showing that those originating from bird-excreta were genetically indistinguishable from some clinical isolates collected during the past two decades.

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 11 Nov 2021


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