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Introduction to Clinical Mycology

Part One

General Terms Used in Clinical Mycology

Slide 23

November 2011

Well, just some more terms, the hyphae we talked about, these are the structures that make the mold colony. The septae are the cross walls that break down the hyphae into compartments. Nonseptate means that they are lacking septae like we said a while ago and hyaline is another term we haven’t talked about yet and it is the hyphae that may be non pigmented. In other words, when you look at them underneath the microscope without any stains at all, they will be clear. If you stain them with a dye like we do in the laboratory, lactophenol aniline blue, you can see they will turn blue with the dye but they still don’t have any definable pigment to them.  So they are called hyaline.

Then we have other fungi that are dematiaceous. These fungi are the ones that contain a dark pigment either a chestnut brown pigment or a very black. They belong to a whole group of different fungi. Sometimes, some of which are very difficult to identify. There are a lot of structures that we have to deal with. Some of them are just a nonspecific kind of things that don’t tell you anything about the organism. One of those is called a chlamydoconidium. It is a big round spore found right within the hyphal strand or on the end of the hyphal strand and its primary function is to protect the organism so if it becomes under adverse conditions, it will round up and form these spores so it can survive. We see it nonspecifically in lots of organisms. And then the Conidia. The conidia are those asexual spores we mentioned produced by molds that have septae. And the reason I mention with septae is that there are a whole group of fungi that do not produce asexual spores and have septate hyphae. They happen to have nonseptate hyphae and the spores are produced in a different way and we will talk about that.

General Terms Used in Clinical Mycology


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