Discipline: Biological Sciences
Subcategory: Physiology and Health
Christian Thomas - Dillard University
Co-Author(s): Bernard Singleton, Dillard University, New Orleans, LA
Sporotrichosis is a chronic fungal infection which can produce ulcers and nodules in the lymph nodes, known as the cutaneous form. There is also the system infection in which the spores are inhaled. The condition which is also known as ‘rose gardeners disease’ is caused by the fungus, Sporothrix schenckii. S. schenkii is found in the soil and plant matter, such as rose bushes and hay. Once an individual comes in contact with the fungal spores in the environment, there is a risk of developing the disease. Sporotrichosis is often misdiagnosed due to the fact most physicians are not that familiar with the clinical signs or symptoms. It can be seen that Sporotrchosis can become public health problem. The disease is world-wide in its distribution. There is a need for a preliminary diagnostic tool. The purpose of this study was to develop a skin testing antigen that could be used as a reliable preliminary diagnostic tool to detect the presence of the causative agent S. schenckii. In order to develop the proper testing antigen three culture filtrate antigens from the yeast phase of the organism were prepared. The first being, 1) the whole culture filtrate, 2) a polysaccharide precipitate of the filtrate, and 3) a protein precipitate of the culture filtrate. Three strains of S. schenkii were isolated from humans and two liters of culture filtrate were produced from each. The organism was then grown at 370C. 103 patients with some form of Mycoses present were involved with this study. Within the 103 patients, there were 20 patients, previously diagnosed with the fungal disease Sporotrichosis. The skin test was then administered to all of the patients in order to monitor whether or not the test would positively detect S. schenckii. Following the test, all 20 patients previously diagnosed with Sporotrichosis were found positive for the disease with the skin test. The test were read 24, 48, and 72 hours after injections subcutaneously. A positive reaction to the skin testing antigens showed induration and erythema greater than 5x5mm at the site of the injection. All those patients tested positive were confirmed by isolating the organism by culturing. It has been proven to be able to get a positive result of by using the skin testing antigen on individual who has been exposed to the fungus, S. schenckii. Future considerations for this project include testing a larger sample of patients with the skin test for accuracy.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): This study was funded by the LSAMP grant Program in which Bernard Singleton, Director of DU-REU-Environmental Health Sciences and Assistant Co-Coordinator of DU-LSAMP Program, Dillard University, New Orleans, LA and Abdalla Darwish, Coordinator of the DU-LS-AMP Program, Dillard University, New Orleans, LA.
Faculty Advisor: Bernard Singleton, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: Data analysis