Displaying publications 1 - 20 of 31 in total

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  1. Tay ST, Na SL, Tajuddin TH
    Mycoses, 2008 Nov;51(6):515-9.
    PMID: 18498307 DOI: 10.1111/j.1439-0507.2008.01516.x
    Cryptococcus albidus and C. laurentii were the predominant non-neoformans cryptococci isolated during an environmental sampling study for C. gattii at Klang Valley, Malaysia. Cryptococcus gattii was not isolated from any of the environmental samples. Cryptococcus albidus and C. laurentii were isolated mainly from vegetative samples of Eucalyptus trees and bird droppings. Upon testing on canavanine-glycine-bromothymol blue (CGB) agar, all the C. albidus isolates remained unchanged. Interestingly, a total of 29 (76.3%) C. laurentii isolates formed blue colours on the CGB agar. Sequence analysis of ITS1-5.8rDNA-ITS2 gene sequences (468 bp) of four CGB-blue C. laurentii isolates demonstrated the closest match (99%) with that of C. laurentii CBS 7140. This study demonstrated the diverse environmental niche of C. albidus and C. laurentii in Malaysia.
  2. Tay ST, Na SL, Chong J
    J. Med. Microbiol., 2009 Feb;58(Pt 2):185-91.
    PMID: 19141735 DOI: 10.1099/jmm.0.004242-0
    The genetic heterogeneity and antifungal susceptibility patterns of Candida parapsilosis isolated from blood cultures of patients were investigated in this study. Randomly amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) analysis generated 5 unique profiles from 42 isolates. Based on the major DNA fragments of the RAPD profiles, the isolates were identified as RAPD type P1 (29 isolates), P2 (6 isolates), P3 (4 isolates), P4 (2 isolates) and P5 (1 isolate). Sequence analysis of the internal transcribed spacer (ITS) gene of the isolates identified RAPD type P1 as C. parapsilosis, P2 and P3 as Candida orthopsilosis, P4 as Candida metapsilosis, and P5 as Lodderomyces elongisporus. Nucleotide variations in ITS gene sequences of C. orthopsilosis and C. metapsilosis were detected. Antifungal susceptibility testing using Etests showed that all isolates tested in this study were susceptible to amphotericin B, fluconazole, ketoconazole, itraconazole and voriconazole. C. parapsilosis isolates exhibited higher MIC(50) values than those of C. orthopsilosis for all of the drugs tested in this study; however, no significant difference in the MICs for these two Candida species was observed. The fact that C. orthopsilosis and C. metapsilosis were responsible for 23.8 and 4.8 % of the cases attributed to C. parapsilosis bloodstream infections, respectively, indicates the clinical relevance of these newly described yeasts. Further investigations of the ecological niche, mode of transmission and virulence of these species are thus essential.
  3. Tay ST, Chai HC, Na SL, Ng KP
    Mycopathologia, 2005 Apr;159(3):325-9.
    PMID: 15883714
    The genotypes of 221 recent isolates of Candida albicans from various clinical specimens of 213 patients admitted to the University Malaya Medical Centre, Malaysia was determined based on the amplification of a transposable intron region in the 25 S rRNA gene. The analyses of 178 C. albicans isolated from nonsterile clinical specimens showed that they could be classified into three genotypes: genotype A (138 isolates), genotype B (38 isolates) and genotype C (2 isolates). The genotyping of 43 clinical isolates from sterile specimens showed that they belonged to genotype A (29 isolates), genotype B (10 isolates), genotype C (2 isolates) and genotype D (2 isolates). The overall distribution of C. albicans genotypes in sterile and nonsterile specimens appeared similar, with genotype A being the most predominant type. This study reported the identification of C. dubliniensis (genotype D) in 2 HIV-negative patients with systemic candidiasis, which were missed by the routine mycological procedure. The study demonstrated the genetic diversity of clinical isolates of C. albicans in Malaysia.
  4. Ng KP, Soo-Hoo TS, Na SL, Ang LS
    Mycopathologia, 2002;155(4):203-6.
    PMID: 12650596
    A total of 576 dermatophytes were isolated from patients with a variety of skin infections from January 1993 to May 2000. Ten species of dermatophytes were identified: Epidermophyton floccosum (0.7%), Microsporum audouinii (1.1%), M. canis (3.1%), M. gypseum (0.3%), Trichophyton concentricum (3.5%), T. equinum (0.2%), T. mentagrophytes (36.1%), T. rubrum (53.8%), T. verrucosum (0.2) and T. violaceum (1.0%). The body sites most frequently affected by dermatophytes were the buttocks, nails and trunk. Anthropophilic dermatophytes made up 60.1% of the isolates; the most common species was T. rubrum, T. mentagrophytes and M. canis were the two main zoophilic dermatophytes. T. mentagrophytes was isolated from all body sites except the scalp. M. canis was found to be associated with domestic dogs and was not isolated from ethnic Malays. The only geophilic dermatophyte was M. gypseum, an uncommon dermatophyte associated with tinea pedis.
  5. Ng KP, Saw TL, Na SL, Soo-Hoo TS
    Mycopathologia, 2001;149(3):141-6.
    PMID: 11307597
    A total of 102 Candida species were isolated from blood cultures from January 1997 to October 1999. Using assimilation of carbohydrate test, 52 (51.0%) of the Candida sp. were identified as C. parapsilosis, 25.5% (26) were C. tropicalis. C. albicans made up 11.8% (12), 6.9% (7) were C. rugosa, 3.8% (4) C. glabrata and 1% (1) C. guilliermondii. No C. dubliniensis was found in the study. In vitro antifungal susceptibility tests showed that all Candida species were sensitive to nystatin, amphotericin B and ketoconazole. Although all isolates remained sensitive to fluconazole, intermediate susceptibility was found in 3 C. rugosa isolates. Antifungal agents with high frequency of resistance were econazole, clotrimazole, miconazole and 5-fluorocytosine. Candida species found to have resistance to these antifungal agents were non-C. albicans.
  6. Mohd Nor F, Tan LH, Na SL, Ng KP
    Mycopathologia, 2015 Aug;180(1-2):95-8.
    PMID: 25739670 DOI: 10.1007/s11046-015-9879-0
    Rhodotorula species are increasingly being identified as a cause of fungal infection in the central nervous system, especially in patients with compromised immunity. The diagnosis could easily be missed due to low index of suspicion, as cryptococcus meningitis and cerebral toxoplasmosis are more common amongst immunocompromised hosts. To date, there are six cases of Rhodotorula-related meningitis reported, and three are associated with human immunodeficiency virus infection. In this report, a case of a Malaysian male with underlying human immunodeficiency virus infection who developed Rhodotorula mucilaginosa meningitis is presented. High-grade fever and severe headaches were the complaints presented in three previous case reports. India ink and nigrosin stainings were performed in the two previous reports and both revealed positive results. R. mucilaginosa were isolated from the culture of the patient's cerebrospinal fluid in all three previous reports. Predominant lymphocyte infiltration in the cerebrospinal fluid examination was documented in two reports. CD4 counts were above 100/µl in two previously published reports, while another report documented CD4 count as 56/µl. Amphotericin B and itraconazole are identified to be the first line of antifungal used and as the maintenance therapy, respectively. The possibility of relapse cannot be excluded as it was reported in the first report. It was also revealed that the current case has almost similar clinical presentation and therapeutic outcome as compared to the published reports, but some differences in diagnostic details were to be highlighted.
  7. Tay ST, Tan HW, Na SL, Lim SL
    J. Med. Microbiol., 2011 Nov;60(Pt 11):1591-7.
    PMID: 21700741 DOI: 10.1099/jmm.0.032854-0
    In this study, six clinical isolates (two from blood, two from urine and one each from a bronchoalveolar lavage and a vaginal swab) were identified as Candida rugosa based on carbohydrate assimilation profiles using API 20C AUX and ID32 C kits (bioMérieux). Sequence analysis of the D1/D2 domain of the yeasts differentiated the isolates into two subgroups, A and B (three isolates per subgroup), which were closely related (99.1-99.6 % nucleotide similarity) to C. rugosa strain ATCC 10571. Compared with the C. rugosa type strain, the intergenic transcribed spacer (ITS) nucleotide similarity for subgroup A was only 89.2 % (29 mismatches and one deletion) and for subgroup B was 93.7 % (20 mismatches). All isolates grew green colonies on Oxoid Chromogenic Candida Agar, with darker pigmentation observed for subgroup A. All isolates were able to grow at 25-42 °C but not at 45 °C. The isolates had identical enzymic profiles, as determined by API ZYM (bioMérieux) analysis, and produced proteinase. High amphotericin MICs (≥1 µg ml(-1)) were noted for two isolates from each subgroup. Dose-dependent susceptibility to fluconazole (MIC 32 µg ml(-1)) was noted in a blood isolate. The biofilms of the isolates demonstrated increased resistance to amphotericin and fluconazole. The greater ITS sequence variability of subgroup A isolates is in support of this yeast being recognized as a distinct species; however, further verification using more sophisticated molecular approaches is required. A sequence comparison study suggested the association of subgroup A with environmental sources and subgroup B with clinical sources. Accurate identification and antifungal susceptibility testing of C. rugosa are important in view of its decreased susceptibility to amphotericin and fluconazole. The ITS region has been shown to be a valuable region for differentiation of closely related subgroups of C. rugosa.
  8. Tan R, Ng KP, Gan GG, Na SL
    Med. J. Malaysia, 2013 Dec;68(6):479-80.
    PMID: 24632920 MyJurnal
    In the past two decades, Fusarium species have been increasingly recognized as serious pathogens in immunocompromised patients. The outcome of fusariosis in the context of severe persistent neutropaenia has been almost universally fatal. The treatment of fusariosis in immunocompromised patients remains a challenge and the prognosis of systemic fusariosis in this population remains poor. This report presents a case of fatal fusariosis in a 37- year-old patient who was diagnosed with precursor-B cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia (ALL).
  9. Tay ST, Chai HC, Na SL, Hamimah H, Rohani MY, Soo-Hoo TS
    Mycopathologia, 2005 Jun;159(4):509-13.
    PMID: 15983736
    The occurrence of Cryptococcus neoformans in bird excreta in Klang valley, Malaysia was determined in this study. Of 544 samples of bird excreta collected from a local zoo, pet shops and public areas, 20 strains of C. neoformans were isolated. All C. neoformans strains were serotype A and thus identified as C. neoformans variety grubii. All did not produce color changes on canavanine-glycine-bromothymol blue agar. All were of alpha-mating types, as determined by a pheromone-specific PCR assay. The antifungal susceptibility testing using agar diffusion method Neo-sensitabs showed that all were susceptible to amphotericin B, fluconazole and itraconazole.
  10. Gan GG, Kamarulzaman A, Goh KY, Ng KP, Na SL, Soo-Hoo TS
    Med. J. Malaysia, 2002 Mar;57(1):118-22.
    PMID: 14569730
    We report a case of an invasive infection with non-sporulating Chrysosporium species in a patient who was treated with chemotherapy for relapsed acute lymphoblastic leukemia. This patient presented with a persistent lobar pneumonia, skin lesions, and possible involvement of the central nervous system. The patient responded to treatment with amphotericin B and oral itraconazole.
  11. Ng KP, Soo-Hoo TS, Na SL, Gan GG, Sangkar JV, Teh AKH
    Med. J. Malaysia, 2003 Oct;58(4):608-12.
    PMID: 15190640
    Scopulariopsis brevicaulis is a soil fungus normally associated with onychomycosis. It causes subcutaneous infection in immunocompromised patients and is rarely isolated from blood. A case of systemic Scopulariopsis brevicaulis infection was reported in a patient with acute myeloid leukemia. The patient developed persistent fever that did not respond to wide spectrum antibiotics and amphotericin B. Scopulariopsis brevicaulis was the only pathogen isolated from blood cultures. The fever subsided with itraconazole and there was no recurrence of fungal infection with prolonged maintenance of oral itraconazole.
  12. Ng KP, Kuan CS, Kaur H, Na SL, Atiya N, Velayuthan RD
    Trop. Med. Int. Health, 2015 Nov;20(11):1447-1453.
    PMID: 26216479 DOI: 10.1111/tmi.12577
    To describe a prospective laboratory-based surveillance of Candida species that were collected from different anatomical sites of patients admitted to the University of Malaya Medical Centre, Malaysia, from the year 2000 to 2013.
  13. Tay ST, Lotfalikhani A, Sabet NS, Ponnampalavanar S, Sulaiman S, Na SL, et al.
    Mycopathologia, 2014 Oct;178(3-4):307-14.
    PMID: 25022264 DOI: 10.1007/s11046-014-9778-9
    BACKGROUND: Candida nivariensis and C. bracarensis have been recently identified as emerging yeast pathogens which are phenotypically indistinguishable from C. glabrata. However, there is little data on the prevalence and antifungal susceptibilities of these species.

    OBJECTIVE: This study investigated the occurrence of C. nivariensis and C. bracarensis in a culture collection of 185 C. glabrata isolates at a Malaysian teaching hospital.

    METHODS: C. nivariensis was discriminated from C. glabrata using a PCR assay as described by Enache-Angoulvant et al. (J Clin Microbiol 49:3375-9, 2011). The identity of the isolates was confirmed by sequence analysis of the D1D2 domain and internal transcribed spacer region of the yeasts. The isolates were cultured on Chromogenic CHROMagar Candida (®) agar (Difco, USA), and their biochemical and enzymic profiles were determined. Antifungal susceptibilities of the isolates against amphotericin B, fluconazole, voriconazole and caspofungin were determined using E tests. Clotrimazole MICs were determined using a microbroth dilution method.

    RESULTS: There was a low prevalence (1.1 %) of C. nivariensis in our culture collection of C. glabrata. C. nivariensis was isolated from a blood culture and vaginal swab of two patients. C. nivariensis grew as white colonies on Chromogenic agar and demonstrated few positive reactions using biochemical tests. Enzymatic profiles of the C. nivariensis isolates were similar to that of C. glabrata. The isolates were susceptible to amphotericin B, fluconazole, voriconazole and caspofungin. Clotrimazole resistance is suspected in one isolate.

    CONCLUSION: This study reports for the first time the emergence of C. nivariensis in our clinical setting.

  14. Chan CL, Yew SM, Ngeow YF, Na SL, Lee KW, Hoh CC, et al.
    BMC Genomics, 2015 Nov 18;16:966.
    PMID: 26581579 DOI: 10.1186/s12864-015-2200-2
    BACKGROUND: Daldinia eschscholtzii is a wood-inhabiting fungus that causes wood decay under certain conditions. It has a broad host range and produces a large repertoire of potentially bioactive compounds. However, there is no extensive genome analysis on this fungal species.

    RESULTS: Two fungal isolates (UM 1400 and UM 1020) from human specimens were identified as Daldinia eschscholtzii by morphological features and ITS-based phylogenetic analysis. Both genomes were similar in size with 10,822 predicted genes in UM 1400 (35.8 Mb) and 11,120 predicted genes in UM 1020 (35.5 Mb). A total of 751 gene families were shared among both UM isolates, including gene families associated with fungus-host interactions. In the CAZyme comparative analysis, both genomes were found to contain arrays of CAZyme related to plant cell wall degradation. Genes encoding secreted peptidases were found in the genomes, which encode for the peptidases involved in the degradation of structural proteins in plant cell wall. In addition, arrays of secondary metabolite backbone genes were identified in both genomes, indicating of their potential to produce bioactive secondary metabolites. Both genomes also contained an abundance of gene encoding signaling components, with three proposed MAPK cascades involved in cell wall integrity, osmoregulation, and mating/filamentation. Besides genomic evidence for degrading capability, both isolates also harbored an array of genes encoding stress response proteins that are potentially significant for adaptation to living in the hostile environments.

    CONCLUSIONS: Our genomic studies provide further information for the biological understanding of the D. eschscholtzii and suggest that these wood-decaying fungi are also equipped for adaptation to adverse environments in the human host.

  15. Yew SM, Chan CL, Lee KW, Na SL, Tan R, Hoh CC, et al.
    PLoS ONE, 2014;9(8):e104352.
    PMID: 25098697 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0104352
    Dematiaceous fungi (black fungi) are a heterogeneous group of fungi present in diverse environments worldwide. Many species in this group are known to cause allergic reactions and potentially fatal diseases in humans and animals, especially in tropical and subtropical climates. This study represents the first survey of dematiaceous fungi in Malaysia and provides observations on their diversity as well as in vitro response to antifungal drugs. Seventy-five strains isolated from various clinical specimens were identified by morphology as well as an internal transcribed spacer (ITS)-based phylogenetic analysis. The combined molecular and conventional approach enabled the identification of three classes of the Ascomycota phylum and 16 genera, the most common being Cladosporium, Cochliobolus and Neoscytalidium. Several of the species identified have not been associated before with human infections. Among 8 antifungal agents tested, the azoles posaconazole (96%), voriconazole (90.7%), ketoconazole (86.7%) and itraconazole (85.3%) showed in vitro activity (MIC ≤ 1 µg/mL) to the largest number of strains, followed by anidulafungin (89.3%), caspofungin (74.7%) and amphotericin B (70.7%). Fluconazole appeared to be the least effective with only 10.7% of isolates showing in vitro susceptibility. Overall, almost half (45.3%) of the isolates showed reduced susceptibility (MIC >1 µg/mL) to at least one antifungal agent, and three strains (one Pyrenochaeta unguis-hominis and two Nigrospora oryzae) showed potential multidrug resistance.
  16. Chan CL, Yew SM, Na SL, Tan YC, Lee KW, Yee WY, et al.
    Genome Announc, 2014;2(2).
    PMID: 24744321 DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00074-14
    Ochroconis constricta is a soilborne dematiaceous fungus that has never been reported to be associated with human infection. Here we report the first draft genome sequence of strain UM 578, isolated from human skin scraping. The genomic information revealed will contribute to a better understanding of this species.
  17. Toh YF, Yew SM, Chan CL, Na SL, Lee KW, Hoh CC, et al.
    PLoS ONE, 2016;11(9):e0162095.
    PMID: 27626635 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0162095
    Pyrenochaeta unguis-hominis is a rare human pathogen that causes infection in human skin and nail. P. unguis-hominis has received little attention, and thus, the basic biology and pathogenicity of this fungus is not fully understood. In this study, we performed in-depth analysis of the P. unguis-hominis UM 256 genome that was isolated from the skin scraping of a dermatitis patient. The isolate was identified to species level using a comprehensive multilocus phylogenetic analysis of the genus Pyrenochaeta. The assembled UM 256 genome has a size of 35.5 Mb and encodes 12,545 putative genes, and 0.34% of the assembled genome is predicted transposable elements. Its genomic features propose that the fungus is a heterothallic fungus that encodes a wide array of plant cell wall degrading enzymes, peptidases, and secondary metabolite biosynthetic enzymes. Antifungal drug resistance genes including MDR, CDR, and ERG11/CYP51 were identified in P. unguis-hominis UM 256, which may confer resistance to this fungus. The genome analysis of P. unguis-hominis provides an insight into molecular and genetic basis of the fungal lifestyles, understanding the unrevealed biology of antifungal resistance in this fungus.
  18. Yew SM, Chan CL, Soo-Hoo TS, Na SL, Ong SS, Hassan H, et al.
    Genome Announc, 2013;1(3).
    PMID: 23723391 DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00158-13
    Pyrenochaeta, classified under the order Pleosporales, is known to cause diseases in plants and humans. Here, we report a draft genome sequence of a Pyrenochaeta sp. isolated from a skin scraping, with an estimated genome size of 39.4 Mb. Genes associated with the synthesis of proteases, toxins, plant cell wall degradation, and multidrug resistance were found.
  19. Ng KP, Yew SM, Chan CL, Chong J, Tang SN, Soo-Hoo TS, et al.
    Genome Announc, 2013 Jan;1(1).
    PMID: 23405310 DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00056-12
    The emergence of the global threat of extensively drug-resistant (XDR) Mycobacterium tuberculosis reveals weaknesses in tuberculosis management and diagnostic services. We report the draft genome sequence of the first extensively drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis strain isolated in Malaysia. The sequence was also compared against a reference strain to elucidate the polymorphism that is related to their extensive resistance.
  20. Ng KP, Yew SM, Chan CL, Tan R, Soo-Hoo TS, Na SL, et al.
    Genome Announc, 2013 Jan;1(1).
    PMID: 23409267 DOI: 10.1128/genomeA.00148-12
    Herpotrichiellaceae spp. are known to be opportunistic human pathogens. Here, we report the ~28.46-Mb draft genome of Herpotrichiellaceae sp. UM 238, isolated from human skin scraping. The UM 238 genome was found to contain many classes of protective genes that are responsible for fungal adaptation under adverse environmental conditions.
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