Clinlab Navigator

Candida Auris

The Centers for Disease control (CDC) first alerted clinicians and laboratories to a newly recognized multi-drug resistant yeast, Candida auris, in June 2016. In addition to being resistant to multiple anti-fungal agents, this Candida species is significant because it causes invasive infections with a high mortality rate. Furthermore, patients can be colonized with the organism, which increases the likelihood of transmission from patient-to-patient in a hospital setting.

Candida auris was initially recognized in Japan in 2009, with international distribution confirmed by 2016. Through August 2017, 153 C. auris infections have been reported by U.S. healthcare facilities. The majority were bloodstream infections (54%) with the remainder from a variety of sources, including sputum and urine. Some of the infections were recognized in patients who had previously been hospitalized outside the U.S. Likewise, treatment failure of a Candida infection from any body site should alert physicians to the possible presence of C. auris.

Traditional identification methods used by microbiology laboratories may misidentify C. auris as another Candida species or give no identification. Mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF) and sequencing methodologies are most likely to provide accurate identifications. Susceptibility testing and identification to species level is performed routinely on Candida species isolated from sterile body sites and upon request when isolated from other sites. An expanded yeast susceptibility panel for Candida species includes fluconazole, caspofungin, micafungin, itraconazole, and voriconazole.

CDC recommendations regarding Candida auris have recently been updated and information for clinicians is accessible at cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/candidiasis/.

AddThis Social Bookmark Button