Graphium

Characteristics: Health effects can be serious, even fatal. No information is available regarding toxicity. Allergenicity has not been studied.

Description: Graphium species are common, and are closely related to several ascomycetes. The sporulating structures of Graphium form synnema (coremia), which are a gathering of conidiophores into a sort of flower bouquet. The taxonomy of Graphium species needs work since the actual sporulating process differs among the many species. Health effects are dependent upon the related ascomycete. There are no reports of illness due to the Graphium stage of Ophiostoma. However, the genus Pseudallescheria (asexual phase is Scedosporium) has a Graphium phase, and these genera are noted for many health effects, some of which have serious consequences. In the form of Scedosporium, There have been many reports of opportunistic infections, including white grain mycetoma which occurs worldwide. Other systemic infections may involve the central nervous system, usually after severe local trauma or after aspiration of polluted water. In addition, this organism may cause an invasive sinusitis, pneumonia, or allergic reactions in the lungs. Ophthalmic cases have been reported. What makes these infections very serious is the fact that this organism is very resistant to most of the antifungal medications available. Scedosporium prolificans has been associated with subcutaneous lesions after trauma with thorns or splinters. In immunocompromised patients or transplantation patients fatal dissemination may occur. No information is available regarding toxicity or allergy. May be identified on surfaces by tape lifts, tease mounts from bulk samples, and in the air by culturable (Andersen) samples. (Spores do not have distinctive morphology and would be categorized as “other colorless” on spore trap samples.) Sources of isolation are many, including woody substrata, plant debris, soil, manure, and polluted water.


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