Using multilocus sequence typing (MLST), Candida albicans can be subdivided into 18 different clades. Farnesol, a quorum-sensing molecule secreted by C. albicans, is thought to play an important role in the development of C. albicans biofilms and is also a virulence factor. This study evaluated whether C. albicans bloodstream infection (BSI) strains belonging to different MLST clades secrete different levels of E,E-farnesol (FOH) and whether they have different clinical characteristics. In total, 149 C. albicans BSI isolates from ten Korean hospitals belonging to clades 18 (n = 28), 4 (n = 23), 1 (n = 22), 12 (n = 17), and other clades (n = 59) were assessed. For each isolate, the FOH level in 24-hour biofilms was determined in filtered (0.45 μm) culture supernatant using high-performance liquid chromatography. Marked differences in FOH secretion from biofilms (0.10â€"6.99 μM) were observed among the 149 BSI isolates. Clade 18 isolates secreted significantly more FOH than did non-clade 18 isolates (mean ± SEM; 2.66 ± 0.22 vs. 1.69 ± 0.10 μM; P < 0.001). Patients with isolates belonging to clade 18 had a lower mean severity of illness than other patients, as measured using the íacute physiology and chronic health evaluation" (APACHE) III score (14.4 ± 1.1 vs. 18.0 ± 0.7; P < 0.05). This study provides evidence that C. albicans BSI isolates belonging to the most prevalent MLST clade (clade 18) in Korea are characterized by increased levels of FOH secretion and less severe illness.
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© 2016 Jung et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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