Author(s): Yang Won Lee, Shin Yung Lee, Younghoon Lee, Won Hee Jung
Background: Malassezia species (spp.) are cutaneous opportunistic pathogens and associated with various dermatological diseases including seborrheic dermatitis, dandruff and atopic dermatitis. Almost all Malassezia spp. are obligatorily lipid-dependent, which might be caused by lack of the myristic acid synthesis. Recent genome analysis of M. restricta and M. globosa suggested that the absence of a gene encoding fatty acid synthesis might be compensated by abundant genes encoding hydrolases, which produce fatty acids, and that lipases and phospholipases may play a role in virulence of the fungus. Objective: The current study aimed to investigate the contribution of lipases and phospholipases in virulence of the M. restricta as being the most frequently isolated Malassezia spp. from the human skin. Methods: Swap samples of two different body sites of at least 18 patients with seborrheic dermatitis were obtained and in vivo expression of lipases and phospholipases of M. restricta was analyzed by the gene specific two-step nested RT-PCR.
Results: The results of the current study suggest that majority of the patients display expression of lipase RES_0242.
Conclusion: These data imply a possible role of lipase in the host environment to produce free fatty acids for the fungus