The Neurotropic Black Yeast Exophiala dermatitidis Induces Neurocytotoxicity in Neuroblastoma Cells and Progressive Cell Death
The neurotropic and extremophilic black yeast Exophiala dermatitidis (Herpotrichellaceae) inhabits diverse indoor environments, in particular bathrooms, steam baths, and dishwashers. Here, we show that the selected strain, EXF-10123, is polymorphic, can grow at 37 °C, is able to assimilate aromatic hydrocarbons (toluene, mineral oil, n-hexadecane), and shows abundant growth with selected neurotransmitters (acetylcholine, gamma-aminobutyric acid, glycine, glutamate, and dopamine) as sole carbon
... ne) as sole carbon sources. We have for the first time demonstrated the effect of E. dermatitidis on neuroblastoma cell model SH-SY5Y. Aqueous and organic extracts of E. dermatitidis biomass reduced SH-SY5Y viability by 51% and 37%, respectively. Melanized extracellular vesicles (EVs) prepared from this strain reduced viability of the SH-SY5Y to 21%, while non-melanized EVs were considerably less neurotoxic (79% viability). We also demonstrated direct interactions of E. dermatitidis with SH-SY5Y by scanning electron and confocal fluorescence microscopy. The observed invasion and penetration of neuroblastoma cells by E. dermatitidis hyphae presumably causes the degradation of most neuroblastoma cells in only three days. This may represent a so far unknown indirect or direct cause for the development of some neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's.