Identification of Malassezia species from Tunisian patients with pityriasis versicolor


Sonia Trabelsi
Jézia Oueslati
Nadia Fekih
Mohamed Ridha Kamoun
Samira Khaled


Background: Pityriasis versicolor is caused by Malassezia sp. It is a common worldwide mycosis. Recently, eleven species are known of the Malassezia genus, and are identified in vitro by their morphological characteristics, biochemical tests and by molecular biology.
The aim of this study is the identification of Malassezia species from Tunisian patients with pityriasis versicolor.
Methods: Specimens were taken from 58 patients with pityriasis versicolor. All samples were both inoculated in Sabouraud dextrose agar and Sabouraud agar overlaid with olive oil. Malassezia species were identified by morphological and physiological methods: macroscopy, microscopy, catalase, urease and lipid assimilation tests.
Results: we have isolated five Malassezia species: Malassezia globosa being isolated in 76.2% of patients, followed by Malassezia furfur (9.55%), Malassezia sympodialis (4.75%), Malassezia slooffiae (4.75%) and Malassezia pachydermaties (4.75%).
Conclusion: in our study Malassezia globosa presents the main species implicated in the pathogenicity of pityriasis versicolor and Malassezia furfur as the second agent of importance.


Pityriasis versicolor, Identification, Malassezia species



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