Trends in antifungal drug susceptibility of Cryptococcus neoformans isolates in the United States: 1992 to 1994 and 1996 to 1998

Academic Article


  • The antifungal drug susceptibilities of two collections of Cryptococcus neoformans isolates obtained through active laboratory-based surveillance from 1992 to 1994 (368 isolates) and 1996 to 1998 (364 isolates) were determined. The MICs of fluconazole, itraconazole, and flucytosine were determined by the National Committee for Clinical Laboratory Standards broth microdilution method; amphotericin B MICs were determined by the E-test. Our results showed that the MIC ranges, the MICs at which 50% of isolates are inhibited (MIC50s), and the MIC90s of these four antifungal agents did not change from 1992 to 1998. In addition, very small numbers of isolates showed elevated MICs suggestive of in vitro resistance. The MICs of amphotericin B were elevated (≥2 μg/ml) for 2 isolates, and the MICs of flucytosine were elevated (≥32 μg/ml) for 14 isolates. Among the azoles, the fluconazole MIC was elevated (≥64 μg/ml) for 8 isolates and the itraconazole MIC (≥1 μg/ml) was elevated for 45 isolates. Analysis of 172 serial isolates from 71 patients showed little change in the fluconazole MIC over time. For isolates from 58 patients (82% of serial cases) there was either no change or a twofold change in the fluconazole MIC. In contrast, for isolates from seven patients (12% of serial cases) the increase in the MIC was at least fourfold. For isolates from another patient there was a 32-fold decrease in the fluconazole MIC over a 1-month period. We conclude that in vitro resistance to antifungal agents remains uncommon in C. neoformans and has not significantly changed with time during the past decade.
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    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Brandt ME; Pfaller MA; Hajjeh RA; Hamill RJ; Pappas PG; Reingold AL; Rimland D; Warnock DW
  • Start Page

  • 3065
  • End Page

  • 3069
  • Volume

  • 45
  • Issue

  • 11