Development of selective media for the isolation of yeasts and filamentous fungi from the sputum of adult patients with cystic fibrosis (CF)

Y. Nagano, B.C. Millar, C.E. Goldsmith, J.M. Walker, Joseph Elborn, J. Rendall, J.E. Moore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Yeasts and filamentous fungi are beginning to emerge as significant microbial pathogens in patients with cystic fibrosis (CF), particularly in relation to allergic-type responses, as seen in patients with allergic bronchopulmonary aspergillosis (ABPA), Aspergillus bronchitis and in invasive fungal disease in lung transplant patients. Four fungal media were compared in this study, including Sabouraud Dextrose Agar (SDA) and Medium B, with and without the addition of selective antibiotics, where antibiotic-supplemented media were designated with (+). These media were compared for their ability to suppress contaminating, mainly Gram-ve pathogens, in CF sputa (Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Burkholderia cepacia complex [BCC] organisms) and to enhance the growth of fungi present in CF sputum. Medium B consisted of glucose (16.7 g/l), agar (20 g/l), yeast extract (30 g/l) and peptone (6.8 g/l) at pH 6.3 and both SDA(+) and Medium B+ were supplemented with cotrimethoxazole, 128 mg/l; chloramphenicol, 50 mg/l; ceftazidime, 32 mg/l; colistin, 24 mg/l). Employment of SDA(+) or Medium B+ allowed an increase in specificity in the detection of yeasts and moulds, by 42.8% and 39.3%, respectively, over SDA when used solely. SDA(+) had a greater ability than Medium B+ to suppress bacterial growth from predominantly Gram-ve co-colonisers. This is a significant benefit when attempting to detect and isolate fungi from the sputum of CF patients, as it largely suppressed any bacterial growth, with the exception of the BCC organisms, thus allowing for an increased opportunity to detect target fungal organisms in sputum and represented a significant improvement over the commercial medium (SDA), which is currently used. Overall, both novel selective media were superior in their ability to suppress bacteria in comparison with the commercially available SDA medium, which is routinely employed in most clinical microbiology diagnostic laboratories presently. Alternatively, Medium B+ had a great ability to grow fungi than SDA(+) and when employed together, the specificity of combined use was 82%, with a sensitivity for yeasts, filamentous fungi, and combined overall fungi of 96.0%, 92.3% and 96.0%, respectively. Overall, when employing one fungal selective medium for the routine detection of yeasts and filamentous fungi in the sputum of CF patients, we would recommend employment of Medium B+. However, we would recommend the combined employment of SDA(+) and Medium B+, in order to synergistically isolate and detect the greatest number of fungi present in CF sputa. (C) 2008 European Cystic Fibrosis Society. Published by Elsevier B.V All rights reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)566-572
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Cystic Fibrosis
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Development of selective media for the isolation of yeasts and filamentous fungi from the sputum of adult patients with cystic fibrosis (CF)'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this