Document Type


Date of Award



College of Science, Engineering, and Technology (COSET)

Degree Name

MS in Biology

First Advisor

Professor Olufisayo Jejelowo


This research will focus on multiple isolates of Stachybotrys species from culture collection companies which will be studied in an attempt to determine the presence of the Trichodiene synthase 5 (Tri5) gene, an enzyme involved in the early stages of the biosynthesis of trichothecenes. Using general primers, the Tri5 gene will be amplified by customized PCR technique. The amplicons will be sequenced using a new multiple sequence technique personally designed. Stachybotrys is a genus of filamentous fungi belonging to the class of anamorphic ascomycetes (Kirk et al, 2001). The genus has a single well-known species, Stachybotrys chartarum. S. chartarum was initially associated with stachybotryotoxicosis, a disease in horses and other animals in the Ukraine and other parts of Eastern Europe during the 1930s. At the same time, it was also reported in humans who handled the infested hay or feed grain or who were exposed to the aerosols of dust and debris from the contaminated materials (Drobotko, 1945 and Gajdusek, 1953). 1 2 Outbreaks of stachybotryotoxicosis have since been reported among farm workers in Hungary (Andrassy et aI., 1980) and Germany (Dill et aI., 1997). During the past two decades Stachybotrys-associated health effects from inhalation exposure in humans have been reported in the United States (Croft et aI., 1986; Johanning et aI., 1993 and 1996; Montana et aI., 1997; Etzel et aI., 1998; Dearborn et aI., 1999 and Flappan et aI., 1999; Elidemir et aI., 1999). The organism has been implicated in sick building syndrome and pulmonary hemosiderosis. In a report by Li et aI., (2001) S. chartarum was associated with soybean root rot. The goal of my study is to test the isolates for trichodiene synthase 5 (tri5) gene to determine if they have the potential to produce trichothecenes or any of its metabolites by using specific multiple sequencing primers that will be designed