The Mycology Unit provides an identification service on fungi and yeasts isolated from medical and veterinary clinical specimens. It also performs antifungal drug sensitivity tests on fungi and yeasts, as well as serological tests for the subcutaneous and systemic fungal infections and allergic lung disease caused by fungi.
The WCH Mycology Unit is recognised by the South Australian Health Department as a State and National Reference Centre for Medical Mycology. The Unit provides specialist diagnostic and reference services, teaching programs, and research activities pertaining to Medical Mycology. It is the only mycological reference laboratory housed in a paediatric institution in Australia.
The Unit is involved in the teaching of medical mycology to undergraduate medical students, post-graduate medical students, technologists and science graduates. The Unit also hosts a regular national course in medical mycology. Mycology Online is an extension of the reference and teaching activities of the Unit.
How to access the service
People needing skin scrapings should get a pathology request form from their GP. This can be taken to the Specimen Collection Area, fourth floor of the Clarence Reiger Building, where the required specimen will be collected.
This service is available between 9am and 4:30pm on weekdays.
Information for families
It is recommended that all antifungal treatment be stopped at least two weeks before a test is carried out.
The Mycology Unit has current research interests in the following areas:
The antifungal properties of garlic and its derivatives.
This research looks at the value of garlic and its derivatives as both topical and intravenous antifungal agents.
Ecological and epidemiological studies on Cryptococcus neoformans
This project has led to the discovery of the natural habitat of the human pathogenic fungus C. neoformans var. gattii. A re-evaluation of the ecology of this fungus is now being undertaken which includes studies on the host/parasite interaction between C. neoformans var. gattii and Eucalyptus camaldulensis.
Ecology studies on dermatophytes
The Unit has been collecting data on dermatophytes since 1960 which has lead to the development of the Kaminski dermatophyte identification scheme.
The clonal identity of Candida albicans types in immunosuppressed subjects, with particular reference to HIV-positive patients
The aim of this project is to provide a sound genetically-based framework for the unequivocal identification and characterization of "strains and species" of Candida within which to examine epidemiological relationships between isolates. We are currently collecting sequential isolates from a large cohort of HIV positive patients.
Evaluation of the susceptibility of Cryptococcus neoformans to terbinafine
The aim of this project is to perform comparative in vitro susceptibility tests against terbinafine and fluconazole to a wide range of clinical and environmrntal isolates of Cryptococcus neoformans using a broth microdilution technique as per the NCCLS M27-A reference method.
Evaluation of a simple disk test for antifungal susceptibility testing
The aim of this project is to validate in vitro susceptibility tests for fluconazole for a large number of yeasts using a simple disk diffusion method against the M27A standard.
Mon - Friday 9am-5pm
Clinical collections are available between 9am and 4:30pm on weekdays.
5th floor, Clarence Reiger Building
Ph (08) 8161 7365
Fax (08) 8161 7589