Histoplasma capsulatum


Histoplasma is a genus of dimorphic fungi commonly found in bird and bat fecal material. Histoplasma contains a few species, including—H. capsulatum—the causative agent of histoplasmosis; and Histoplasma capsulatum var. farciminosum (old term, Histoplasma farciminosum), causing epizootic lymphangitis in horses.

Histoplasma capsulatum

Histoplasma capsulatum is a soil-borne, dimorphic fungus that causes histoplasmosis a disease of humans, dogs and cats. It is found throughout the world but is most prevalent in the Americas, India and southeastern Asia favoring a warm, moist, and humid climate. It is endemic in certain areas of the United States, particularly in states bordering the Ohio River valley, the Missouri River valley, and the lower Mississippi River. The fungus has been found in poultry-house litter, caves, areas harboring bats and in bird roosts (particularly those of starlings) but even accumulations of household dust or soil-containing houseplants may be potential sources of infection with this fungi. Infection is usually due to inhaling contaminated air.

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