& livestock assay data sheet
qualitative detection of Histoplasma
species by real time polymerase
Histoplasma is a genus of dimorphic
fungi belonging to the family Ajellomycetaceae which are
commonly found in bird and bat fecal material. The
Histoplasma genus includes H. capsulatum which
causes histoplasmosis; H. farciminosum which causes
epizootic lymphangitis in horses; and H. duboisii which
causes African histoplasmosis.
H. capsulatum is most prevalent in
the Ohio and Mississippi river valleys. The disease caused by
H. capsulatum is called histoplasmosis, also known as
"cave disease," "Darling's disease," "Ohio Valley disease,"
"Reticuloendotheliosis," "spelunker’s lung" and “caver's
disease.” Symptoms primarily affect the lungs, but other organs
can be affected if the fungus spreads in the body.
Histoplasmosis is commonly found in immunocompromised
individuals such as AIDS patients and cancer patients.
People can be infected by inhaling microscopic
fungi borne from bird or bat feces, or decomposing human
biological fluids including urine, vomit, and feces.
Histoplasmosis can be diagnosed by detection
of antigens in blood or urine samples by immunological or
molecular methods. However, immunology is not very specific
because antigens of Histoplasma can cross-react with antigens of
blastomycosis, coccidioidomycosis, paracoccidioidomycosis and
Penicillium marneffei infection. Formal histoplasmosis diagnoses
may be confirmed by culturing the fungus directly. However,
cultures may take up to 6 weeks for diagnostic growth to occur.
Molecular detection by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) can
provide a rapid, specific and sensitive method for diagnosis of
this fungus (Elias et al., 2012).
Help confirm the disease causing agent
Shorten the time required to confirm a clinical
diagnosis of Histoplasma
Help ensure that flocks and animal groups are free of this fungus
Early prevention of spread of this fungus
Minimize personnel exposure to this fungus
Safety monitoring of biological products and vaccines
that derive from birds and susceptible livestock
Elías, N.A., Cuestas, M.L.,
Sandoval, M., Poblete, G., Lopez-Daneri, G., Jewtuchowicz, V.,
Iovannitti, C. and Mujica, M.T. (2012) Rapid identification of
Histoplasma capsulatum directly from cultures by multiplex PCR.
0.2 ml whole blood in EDTA (purple top) tube, or urine, or sputum, or bronchoalveolar lavage, or feces
or fecal swab, or 0.2 ml fresh, frozen or fixed tissue, or
environmental surface swab.
Contact Zoologix if advice is needed to determine an appropriate specimen type for a specific diagnostic application. For specimen types not listed here, please contact Zoologix to confirm specimen acceptability and shipping instructions.
specimen types, if there will be a delay in shipping, or during
very warm weather, refrigerate specimens until shipped and ship
with a cold pack unless more stringent shipping requirements are
specified. Frozen specimens should be shipped so as to remain
frozen in transit. See shipping
instructions for more information.
2 business days
Qualitative real time PCR