Translational Development and Application of (1→3)-β-d-Glucan for Diagnosis and Therapeutic Monitoring of Invasive Mycoses
A 44-year-old female presented with a 3-month history of headache, dizziness, nausea, and vomiting. Her past medical history was significant for long-standing intravenous drug abuse. Shortly after admission, the patient became hypertensive and febrile, with fever as high as 38.8°C. The lumbar puncture profile supported an infectious process; however multiple cultures of blood and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) did not initially show growth of organisms. Finally after 9 days of incubation, a CSF culture showed evidence of a few colonies of Candida albicans. To confirm the diagnosis, preserved CSF from that sample was tested for (1→3)-β-d-glucan, showing levels >500pg/ml. This report illustrates a rare complication of intravenous drug use in an immunocompetent patient and demonstrates the utility of (1→3)-β-d-glucan testing in possible Candida meningitis.