Schizophyllum spp

From Dog
Osteomyelitis in a dog due to Schizophyllum commune[1]

Schizophyllum spp are a filamentous basidiomycetous fungus which is normally found as a commensal on rotting vegetation.

Schizophyllum is a mushroom that colonizes rotting wood and has a wide global distribution. It maintains itself via a complex life cycle that includes fruiting bodies (mushrooms), basidia, basidiospores, homokayons and dikaryons[2].

Humans have been frequently infected by this fungus, with respiratory disease the primary complaint[3].

Dogs are thought to become infected from mycelia penetrating wounds[1].

Schizophyllum are an opportunistic pathogen that causes infections characterized by progressive subcutaneous granulomatous lesions in the subcutaneous tissues as well as disseminated visceral infections[4].

Species which are pathogenic to dogs include:

  • Schizophyllum commune

In dogs, disseminated infections have been reported, with dogs presenting primarily with cutaneous granulomas[5], pulmonary granulomas, regional lymphadenopathy and osteomyelitis[6].

Diagnosis can be ascertained by microscopic identification of the fungus or by PCR assay speciation[7]. Lymph nodes characteristically contain PAS positive fungal elements and portions of tissue culture produce mycelial fungal growth.

Treatment has been effective with long-term azole therapy, specifically ketoconazole or itraconazole.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Tanaka H et al (2008) Basidiomycosis: Schizophyllum commune osteomyelitis in a dog. J Vet Med Sci 70(11):1257-1259
  2. Palmer, GE & Horton, JS (2006) Mushrooms by magic: making connections between signal transduction and fruiting body development in the basidiomycete fungus Schizophyllum commune. FEMS Microbiol Lett 262:1–8
  3. Buzina, W et al (2001) Development of molecular methods for identification of Schizophyllum commune from clinical samples. J Clin Microbiol 39:2391–2396
  4. Miller SA et al (2012) Isolation and sequence-based identification of Oxyporus corticola from a dog with generalized lymphadenopathy. J Vet Diagn Invest 24(1):178-181
  5. Kano R et al (2002) First report on Schizophyllum commune from a dog. J Clin Microbiol 40(9):3535-3537
  6. Mori T et al (2009) Mycotic osteomyelitis caused by Schizophyllum commune in a dog. Vet Rec 165(12):350-351
  7. Guglielmo, F et al (2007) A multiplex PCR-based method for the detection and early identification of wood rotting fungi in standing trees. J Appl Microbiol 103:1490–1507