Invasive infection due to penicillium species other than P. marneffei

J Infect. 2002 Oct;45(3):184-95. doi: 10.1053/jinf.2002.1056.


Infection caused by Penicillium spp. due to species other than P. marneffei is rare. We present three such cases of invasive disease. The first had chronic granulomatous disorder (CGD) with pulmonary infection caused by Penicillium spp. and he responded to amphotericin B therapy. Cases two and three were not known to be immunocompromised and both failed to respond to therapy. Case two had cerebral disease from an unknown source caused by P. chrysogenum. Case three probably acquired infection caused by P. decumbens peri-operatively and presented with paravertebral infection. The pertinent literature on invasive infections of Penicillium spp. other than P. marneffei is reviewed. From 1951 onwards, 31 reported cases of invasive disease included 12 cases of pulmonary infection (six in non-immunocompromised patients), four cases of prosthetic valve endocarditis, six cases of CAPD peritonitis, five cases of endophthalmitis, individual cases of fungemia and oesophagitis (both in AIDS), upper urinary tract infection and intracranial infection. Trauma, surgery or prosthetic material is commonly implicated in the non-pulmonary cases. Superficial infection (keratitis and otomycosis) is commonly caused by Penicillium spp. Allergic pulmonary disease, often occupational (such as various cheeseworkers' diseases), is also common. Optimal therapy for invasive infection is not established, but surgery may be advisable if possible. Amphotericin B may be the most effective antifungal drug.

Publication types

  • Case Reports
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • AIDS-Related Opportunistic Infections / diagnosis
  • AIDS-Related Opportunistic Infections / drug therapy
  • Adult
  • Endocarditis / diagnosis
  • Endocarditis / drug therapy
  • Endophthalmitis / diagnosis
  • Endophthalmitis / drug therapy
  • Hematologic Neoplasms / microbiology
  • Humans
  • Lung / microbiology
  • Lung / pathology
  • Male
  • Meningitis, Fungal / diagnosis
  • Meningitis, Fungal / drug therapy
  • Middle Aged
  • Mycoses / classification
  • Mycoses / diagnosis
  • Mycoses / microbiology*
  • Penicillium* / classification
  • Penicillium* / drug effects
  • Penicillium* / pathogenicity
  • Peritonitis / diagnosis
  • Peritonitis / drug therapy
  • Urinary Tract / microbiology
  • Urinary Tract / pathology