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cryptococcosis:see fungal infectionfungal infection,
infection caused by a fungus (see Fungi), some affecting animals, others plants. Fungal Infections of Human and Animals
Many fungal infections, or mycoses, of humans and animals affect only the outer layers of skin, and although they are sometimes
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(European blastomycosis), a deep-systemic fungal disease of man and animals caused by the yeastlike fungus Cryptococcus neoformans.
Cryptococcosis is a rare and serious disease, found in all countries. The sources of infection for man and the paths of dissemination of the pathogenic principle are unknown.
In man, cryptococcosis is characterized by predominant affection of the lungs, central nervous system, skin, and subcutaneous tissue, with subsequent metastases to the viscera. Diagnosis of the disease is difficult; laboratory diagnosis consists in isolation of the causative agent. The disease is treated medicinally (amphotericin B), combined with anticryptococcal rabbit serum or gamma globulin.
In animals, cryptococcosis is widespread in the USA, Denmark, Italy, France, and the Netherlands, and it has been recorded in Switzerland and the USSR. Cattle, cats, dogs, and monkeys are affected. The causative agent enters the animal’s body through the respiratory and digestive tracts. In cattle, cryptococcosis produces alternate chills and fever, swelling and soreness in the udders, a sharp decrease in milk production, and, with metastasis to the lungs, pneumonia. In dogs and cats, it affects the lungs and central nervous system. The diseased animals show disturbances of coordination, labored breathing, cough, and, occasionally, blindness. Treatment has not been developed. Zoo-hygienic and sanitary measures are of decisive importance in preventing cryptococcosis in animals.