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The page below is a sample from the LabCE course Fungal Infections in Humans. Access the complete course and earn ASCLS P.A.C.E.-approved continuing education credits by subscribing online.

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Dermatophytes (Epidermophyton, Microsporum, Trichophyton)

Trichophyton rubrum produces tear-shaped microconidia that are arranged along the conidiophore, generating a "birds on a telephone wire" appearance.
The top right image shows a T. rubrum culture plate demonstrating colonial morphology that is flat to cottony, and raised and ruffled at its center. The frontal coloration can range from a white to bright yellowish-beige and even to a red-violet color. From the reverse, the colonies display a coloration that is a light yellowish to brown, or reddish brown. The bottom right image shows a T. rubrum lactophenol cotton blue preparation showing a large, septate macroconidium, and numbers of smooth-walled, teardrop-shaped microconidia.