Mitosporic fungus. Hyphomycetes. Teleomorph (sexual state): Byssochlamyes (Ascomycete).
Approx. 9 to 30 species, depending on taxonomic system.
Soil and decaying plant material, composting processes, legumes, cottonseeds; some species parasitize insects.
Has been isolated from jute fibers, paper, PVC, timber (oak wood), optical lenses, leather, photographic paper, cigar tobacco, harvested grapes, bottled fruit, and fruit juice undergoing pasteurization.
P. variotii: Aw=0.84
Paecilomyces is closely related to Penicillium.
Type I allergies (hay fever, asthma).
Type III hypersensitivity pneumonitis: Humidifier lung.
Although Paecilomyces grows at 37°C, human disease is relatively rare. Mycotic keratitis in conjunction with corneal implants, nosocomial infections, endocarditis, infections in immunocompromised patients are reported.
Paecilotoxins, byssochlamic acid, variotin, ferrirubin, viriditoxin, indole-3-acetic acid, fusigen and patulin.
Grows well on general fungal media. Some species produce distinctive pigments such as ocher and lilac. Paecilomyces does not produce blue or green colonies. Paecilomyces variotii is thermophilic (grows up to 55°C).
Free spores are similar to Penicillium/Aspergillus.
Recognizable if all sporulation structures are present. Conidia are produced in long chains from slender tapering divergent phialides.