John Clauson

Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Larry Elliott, Scott Ford, Martin Houston

Degree Program

Department of Biology

Degree Type

Master of Science


Cryptococcus neoformans is an encapsulated yeast responsible for severe meningoencephalitis. The importance of epidemiological studies on cryptococcosis has increased since the beginning of the AIDS epidemic. C. neoformans exists in two varieties containing four serotypes, C. neoformans var. neoformans (serotypes A and D) and C. neoformans var. gattii (serotypes B and C). Locally C. neoformans var. neoformans has been associated with pigeon feces during those months having an average temperature of 64.2°F j(17.8°C) and above. Clinical and environmental isolates of C. neoformans obtained from regional hospitals and environmental samplings, respectively, have been grouped into their variety status utilizing canavanine-glycine-bromthymol blue agar. Polyclonal antisera against C. neoformans serotypes A, B, C and D were isolated from challenged rabbits. Serotyping C. neofromans isolates using the polyclonal antisera resulted in 57% (20 of 35) of the serotypes confirmed with a direct immunofluorescent assay utilizing a single monoclonal antibody (E1). Data from the immunofluorescence assay suggest all C. neoformans obtained from regional hospitals (26 of 26) and those isolated from the environment (9 of 9) belong to the A serotype group. These data have provided information leading to the origin of infection for cryptococcosis in our region, which may be beneficial to immunocompromised individuals.


Bacterial Infections and Mycoses | Biology | Diseases | Immunology and Infectious Disease | Life Sciences | Medical Immunology | Medical Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences