Plant Fungus Infects Human in First Reported Case of Its Kind
HEALTH 03 April 2023
The fruiting body of Chondrostereum purpureum growing from a dead tree. (Strobilomyces/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-SA-3.0)
Silver leaf disease is a curse for a variety of botanicals, from pears to roses to rhododendron. Infecting their leaves and branches, the fungus Chondrostereum purpureum can be fatal for the plant if not quickly treated.
Aside from the risk of losing the occasional rose bush, the fungal disease has never been considered a problem for humans. Until now.
In what researchers suggest is the first reported case of its kind, a 61-year-old Indian mycologist appears to have contracted a rather serious case of silver leaf disease in his own throat, providing a rare example of a pathogen seemingly making an enormous leap across entire kingdoms in the tree of life.