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Which Fungus Originally was Trichophyton mentagrophytes? Historical Review and Illustration by a Clinical Case.
Publication types: Journal ArticlePublication Status: ppublish
Several dermatophytes producing numerous pyriform or round microconidia were called Trichophyton mentagrophytes. Among these dermatophytes are the teleomorph species Arthroderma benhamiae, Arthroderma vanbreuseghemii and Arthroderma simii, and other species such as Trichophyton interdigitale, Trichophyton erinacei and Trichophyton quinckeanum for which only the anamorph is known. Confusion exists about which fungus should be really called T. mentagrophytes and about the rational use of this name in practice. We report a case of beard ringworm (tinea barbae) with A. vanbreuseghemii. According to both clinical signs and the type of hair parasitism, this case was exactly compatible to the first description of a non-favic dermatophytosis by Gruby under the name of "mentagrophyte" from which was derived the dermatophyte epithet mentagrophytes. In addition, the phenotypic characters of the isolated fungus in cultures perfectly matched with those of the first description of a dermatophyte under T. mentagrophytes by Blanchard (Parasites animaux et parasites végétaux à l'exclusion des Bactéries, Masson, Paris, 1896). In conclusion, T. mentagrophytes corresponds to the fungus later named A. vanbreuseghemii. However, because the neotype of T. mentagrophytes was not adequately designated in regard to the ancient literature, we would privilege the use of A. vanbreuseghemii and abandon the name of T. mentagrophytes.
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