The first isolate of Candida auris in China: clinical and biological aspects

The emerging human fungal pathogen Candida auris has been recognized as a multidrug resistant species and is associated with high mortality. This fungus was first described in Japan in 2009 and has been reported in at least 18 countries on five continents. In this study, we report the first isolate of C. auris from the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) of a hospitalized woman in China. Interestingly, this isolate is susceptible to all tested antifungals including amphotericin B, fluconazole, and caspofungin. Copper sulfate (CuSO4) also has a potent inhibitory effect on the growth of this fungus. Under different culture conditions, C. auris exhibits multiple morphological phenotypes including round-to-ovoid, elongated, and pseudohyphal-like forms. High concentrations of sodium chloride induce the formation of a pseudohyphal-like form. We further demonstrate that C. auris is much less virulent than Candida albicans in both mouse systemic and invertebrate Galleria mellonella models.