Identification and distribution of Malassezia spp on healthy horses skin in the north of Iran

Document Type : Research Article


Associate professor ,Department of Medical Mycology ,Faculty of Medicine, Tonekabon Branch ,Islamic Azad University, Tonekabon ,Iran, P. O. Box: Tonekabon 46815-559.


The genus Malassezia consist of lipophilic yeasts are known to be as component of the normal microflora of human skin and many mammals and birds. The purpose of this study was determinate the distribution of Malassezia sp. on the horses skin in the in the north of Iran and identification of them according to horses’ sex ,age,breed and living geographically area. During the 15 month period, sampling was carried out using the scraping methods from different areas of skin; 256horse. A part of samples surveyed microscopically with methylene blue stain methods. All samples were inculcated onto sabouraud glucose agar media supplement with olive oil. The identification to lipid – dependence yeasts was based on the ability to use certain Tweens.The cremophore El assimilation test and splitting of Esculin were used as additional key characters. Other tests such as the catalase reaction and the morphological characteristics on SGA was administered. The prevalence of Malassezia spp. in the studied horses was 33.98%. M.pachydermatis was only isolated in 12 horse whereas lipid-dependent species isolated in 75 horse. The most frequently isolated Malassezia spp. was in groin with24.27%,and the least of it, dorsrum 15.54%.The most frequently isolated species were M. globosa (22.33%) followed by M. fur fur (18.45%) ,M. restricta (11.59%), M.pachydermatis (11.65%) ,M.obtusa (11.65%) , M. sympodialis (11.65%) and M.slooffiae (10.69%). Distribution of Malassezia species in the healthy body have been investigated using culture-based and biochemistry techniques, and variable results have been reported from different geographical regions