What is it about?

Infections caused by Candida yeasts can often result in patients getting sicker and can even be life-threatening. Since different species of Candida respond differently to the drugs used to treat this infection, accurate species identification in the diagnostic laboratory is very important. Solidifed growth media with chromogenic (colour-changing) substrates are routinely used in the laboratory to identify Candida species according to the colour of their colonies on an agar plate. This study looks at different Candida chromogenic media and shows which are the most accurate in identifying individual Candida species.

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Why is it important?

Our study showed that out of the five chromogenic media tested, CHROMagar Candida, manufactured by CHROMagar showed the best results, followed by Chromogenic Candida agar (also known as Oxoid Brilliance Candida agar), manufactured by Oxoid. Chromogenic agars manufactured by Fluka and Bio-Rad did not allow for the differentiation of all species tested, while BIGGY agar (also manufactured by Oxoid) did not perform as described by the manufacturer for any of the species. We therefore suggest the use of CHROMagar Candida agar for the accurate identification of Candida species in the routine laboratory.


Despite the limitations, chromogenic media provide a good presumptive screening of Candida species.

Emerita Professor Charlene WJ Africa
University of the Western Cape

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Strengths and Limitations of different Chromogenic Media for the Identification of Candida Species, Journal of Microbiology Research, December 2012, Scientific and Academic Publishing, DOI: 10.5923/j.microbiology.20120205.04.
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