In recent years, Geosmithia argillacea has been increasingly reported in humans and animals and can be considered an emerging pathogen. The taxonomy of Geosmithia was recently studied, and Geosmithia argillacea and related species were transferred to the new genus Rasamsonia. The diversity among a set of Rasamsonia argillacea strains, including 28 clinical strains, was studied, and antifungal susceptibility profiles were generated. Data obtained from morphological studies and from phylogenetic analyses of internal transcribed spacer (ITS) and partial _-tubulin and calmodulin sequences revealed the presence of four species in the Rasamsonia argillacea complex, two of which are newly described here: R. piperina sp. nov. and R. aegroticola sp. nov. In contrast to other related genera, all Rasamsonia species can be identified with ITS sequences. A retrospective identification was performed on recently reported clinical isolates from animal or human patients. Susceptibility tests showed that the antifungal susceptibility profiles of the four members of the R. argillacea complex are similar, and caspofungin showed significant activity in vitro, followed by amphotericin B and posaconazole. Voriconazole was the least active of the antifungals tested. The phenotypically similar species R. brevistipitata and R. cylindrospora had different antifungal susceptibility profiles, and this indicates that correct species identification is important to help guide appropriate antifungal therapy.
Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 2013, Vol 51, Issue 1, p. 22-30