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Microorganisms 2018, 6(2), 46;

The Genus Wallemia—From Contamination of Food to Health Threat

National Institute of Biology, Večna pot 111, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
Biology Department, Biotechnical Faculty, University of Ljubljana, Jamnikarjeva 101, SI-1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 April 2018 / Revised: 17 May 2018 / Accepted: 18 May 2018 / Published: 21 May 2018
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The fungal genus Wallemia of the order Wallemiales (Wallemiomycotina, Basidiomycota) comprises the most xerotolerant, xerophilic and also halophilic species worldwide. Wallemia spp. are found in various osmotically challenged environments, such as dry, salted, or highly sugared foods, dry feed, hypersaline waters of solar salterns, salt crystals, indoor and outdoor air, and agriculture aerosols. Recently, eight species were recognized for the genus Wallemia, among which four are commonly associated with foods: W. sebi, W. mellicola, W. muriae and W. ichthyophaga. To date, only strains of W. sebi, W. mellicola and W. muriae have been reported to be related to human health problems, as either allergological conditions (e.g., farmer’s lung disease) or rare subcutaneous/cutaneous infections. Therefore, this allergological and infective potential, together with the toxins that the majority of Wallemia spp. produce even under saline conditions, defines these fungi as filamentous food-borne pathogenic fungi. View Full-Text
Keywords: Wallemia; food; air; pathogen; xerophile; halophile; mycotoxin; farmer’s lung disease; subcutaneous infection Wallemia; food; air; pathogen; xerophile; halophile; mycotoxin; farmer’s lung disease; subcutaneous infection
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Zajc, J.; Gunde-Cimerman, N. The Genus Wallemia—From Contamination of Food to Health Threat. Microorganisms 2018, 6, 46.

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