Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Blastomyces dermatitidis

Contributor(s): Vetstream Ltd




  • Genus: Blastomyces.
  • Species: dermatitidis.


  • Gk: blastos- sprout, germ; mukes- fungus.
  • Gk: derma- skin.

Active Forms

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Clinical Effects



  • There is limited evidence of natural reservoirs of Blastomyces.
  • Soil saprophyte, but attempts to isolate the organism from soil have been inconsistent.
  • Colonizes animal wastes and decaying vegetation at low pH and in moist conditions.


  • Yeast form is found in tissues   →   reproduces by broad-based budding.
  • Yeast form occurs in soil and when grown at room temperature   →   reproduces asexually using conidia.
  • Also has a sexual stage, Ajellomyces dermatitidis.


  • Most commonly by inhalation. Rarely percutaneous transmission from a bite.

Pathological effects

  • Impaired cell-mediated immunity predisposes to the infection and may be the result of the infection.
  • Both cell-mediated and humoral responses occur.
  • Entry of conidia occurs, usually via the respiratory tract. Change to yeast form occurs in the tissues.
  • Inflammatory response occurs resulting in pyogranulomatous lesions in the terminal bronchioles and lymph nodes.
  • Dissemination may occur to bones, bone marrow, eyes, skin, urogentital tract and mammary glands.
  • Animal usually presents with skin or respiratory signs, fever, anorexia, weight loss, ocular disease or locomotor disturbances.
  • Rarely central nervous system signs.


Control via chemotherapies


  • Not available.


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Further Reading


Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Davies C, Troy G C (1996) Deep mycotic infections in cats. JAAHA 32 (5), 380-391 PubMed.
  • Nasisse M P, van Ee R T, Wright B (1985) Ocular changes in a cat with disseminated blastomycosis. JAVMA 187 (6), 629-631 PubMed.
  • Jasmin A M, Carroll J M, Baucom J N et al (1969) Systemic blastomycosis in siamese cats. Vet Med Small Anim Clin 64 (1), 33-37 PubMed.