Validation and Clinical Application of Molecular Methods for the Identification of Molds in Tissue


P. J. Paterson, S. Seaton, T. D. McHugh, J. McLaughlin, M. Potter, H. G. Prentice, and C. C. Kibbler
Molecular Identification of Molds • CID 2006:42 (1 January) • 51


Background. Invasive fungal infections due to less-common molds are an increasing problem, and accuratediagnosis is difficult.Methods. We used our previously established molecular method, which allows species identification of moldsin histological tissue sections, to test sequential specimens from 56 patients with invasive fungal infections whowere treated at our institution from 1982 to 2000.Results. The validity of the method was demonstrated with the establishment of a molecular diagnosis in 52cases (93%). Confirmation of the causative organism was made in all cases in which a mold had been culturedfrom the tissue specimen. Less-common molds were identified in 7% of cases and appear to be an increasingproblem.Conclusions. Our previously established method has proven to be of value in determining the incidence ofinvasive infection caused by less-common molds. Institutions should continue to pursue diagnosis of invasivefungal infections by means of tissue culture and microbiologic analysis.