Increasing number of fungi-linked hospitalisation
During the Covid U.S. researchers started to collect information about signs that COVID makes the spread of deadly fungi possible.

After COVID treatments patients are extremely vulnerable to other pathogens (e.g.: fungi). Fungi are surging beyond the climate zones they long lived in, adapting to environments that would once have been inimical, learning new behaviours that let them leap between species in novel ways. While executing those manoeuvres, they are becoming more successful pathogens, threatening human health in ways—and numbers—they could not have been achieved before.

Just in the U.S., the CDC estimates that more than 75,000 people are hospitalized annually for a fungal infection, and another 8.9 million people seek an outpatient visit, costing about $7.2 billion a year. When COVID arrived, researchers had a fear, the number of Aspergillus cases would surge and the U.S. hospitals, will not alert to the threat. Johns Hopkins began testing COVID patients in its I.C.U. with the kind of molecular diagnostic tests used in Europe, trying to catch up to the infection in time to be able to treat it. Across the five hospitals the Johns Hopkins system operates, it found that one out of 10 people with severe COVID was developing aspergillosis.

Several patients died, including one whose aspergillosis affected to the brain. There were many others like that patient, across the country, whose illness was not being detected in time. According to the researchers “Aspergillus is more important in COVID right now than Candida auris. Without a doubt."

The spread of Aspergillus sp. and other fungi is still not known and it worth to consider how food sector might be affected.


Newsletter subscription