Human Mycobiota-Selected Ontocenoses of Students of Natural Science and Medicine

Katarzyna Góralska, Elzbieta Ejdys, Anna Biedunkiewicz and Maria Dynowska

Objectives: The aim of this study was to compare the prevalence of yeast-like fungi and yeasts on the mucous membranes of a group of students of Natural Sciences and Medicine.

Materials and methods: The study involved 156 students of the Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology (FB&B) and 37 students of the Faculty of Medical Sciences (FMS). Material samples were collected with sterile cotton swab from the nose, mouth and throat. The identification of fungi was carried out by the evaluation of macrocultures and microcultures on Nickerson agar and biochemical features.

Results: Yeast-like fungi and yeast were isolated from 41.97% of the subjects (81 people). The fungal colonization of the mucous membrane was observed in 59 students of the Faculty of Biology and Biotechnology (37.82%) and 22 students (56.46%) of the Faculty of Medical Sciences. The obtained fungi were classified into 31 taxonomic units. The predominant species were Candida dubliniensis and Lachancea thermotolerans (syn. Kluyveromyces thermotolerans). 14 species with defined status of BSL were recorded.

Conclusions: Yeast and yeast-like fungi were more frequent among students of Biology and Biotechnology, than students of Medical Sciences. In students of FB&B greater taxonomic diversity of fungi was found than in students of FMS. The species diversity and prevalence of fungi observed in students of the Life Sciences are determined not only by lifestyle, but mainly by the possibility and frequency of contact with a variety of reservoirs and sources of potentially pathogenic fungi. The occurrence in human ontocenoses of 14 species classified to 1st and 2nd class of Biosafety Level is also very important.