Phylogenetic relationship of Fusarium species isolated from keratitis using TEF1 and RPB2 gene sequences

  • Zeynab Yassin Antimicrobial Resistance Research Center, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Zahra Salehi Department of Mycology, Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran
  • Mohammad Soleimani Department of Ocular Trauma and Emergency, Farabi Eye Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Ensieh Lotfali Department of Medical Parasitology and Mycology, School of Medicine, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Mahsa Fattahi Center for Research and Training in Skin Diseases and Leprosy, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
  • Somayeh Sharifynia Clinical Tuberculosis and Epidemiology Research Center, National Research Institute of Tuberculosis and Lung Diseases (NRITLD), Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Keywords: Keratitis; Fusarium oxysporum; Fusarium solani species complex; Fusarium fujikuroi species complex


Background and Objectives: Fusarium species are known to be one of the common causes of keratitis. This study was conducted to identify Fusarium spp. causing keratitis and to investigate their genetic diversity using TEF1 and RPB2 gene sequences.

Materials and Methods: Twenty-four clinical isolates of Fusarium were isolated from the patient with keratitis. Phylogenet- ic analysis of two-locus of the 24 clinical isolates and three reference strains was carried out using the maximum parsimony and RAxML methods.

Results: Based on gene sequences of the 24 clinical isolates, 17, 4, and 3 isolates were identified as Fusarium solani species complex (FSSC), Fusarium fujikuroi species complex (FFSC), and Fusarium oxysporum, respectively. FFSC include F. pro- liferatum (n=1), F. globosum (n=1), F. verticillioides (n=1), and F. brevicatenulatum (n=1), respectively.

Conclusion: Given that sequence of a sole gene can be challenging and on the other hand, due to the high resistance to anti- fungal drugs, identification of Fusarium species is of substantial significance. In this study, by designing a novel set of primers for the RPB2 area and using TEF1 primer, we were able to differentiate 24 Fusarium spp. isolated from patients with keratitis.