Kok Wei Lee

University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpor, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Are you Kok Wei Lee?

Claim your profile

Publications (11)26.33 Total impact

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Peritonitis is the leading complication of peritoneal dialysis, which is primarily caused by bacteria rather than fungi. Peritonitis is responsible for approximately 18% of the infection-related mortality in peritoneal dialysis patients. In this paper, we report the isolation of a rare fungus, Quambalaria cyanescens, from the peritoneal fluid of a man after he switched from continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis to nocturnal intermittent peritoneal dialysis. Based on the morphological examination and multigene phylogeny, the clinical isolate was confirmed as Q. cyanescens. This pathogen exhibited low sensitivity to all tested echinocandins and 5-flucytosine. Interestingly, morphological characterization revealed that Q. cyanescens UM 1095 produced different pigments at low temperatures (25°C and 30°C) on various culture media. It is important to monitor the emergence of this rare fungus as a potential human pathogen in the tropics. This study provides insight into Q. cyanescens UM 1095 phenotype profiles using a Biolog phenotypic microarray (PM). Of the 760 nutrient sources tested, Q. cyanescens UM 1095 utilized 42 compounds, and the fungus can adapt to a broad range of osmotic and acidic environments. To our knowledge, this is the first report of the isolation of Q. cyanescens from peritoneal fluid, revealing this rare fungus as a potential human pathogen that may be misidentified using conventional methods. The detailed morphological, molecular and phenotypic characterization of Q. cyanescens UM 1095 provides the basis for future studies on its biology, lifestyle, and potential pathogenicity.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2015 · PLoS ONE
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Background: Daldinia eschscholtzii is a wood-inhabiting fungus that causes wood decay under certain conditions. It has a broad host range and produces a large repertoire of potentially bioactive compounds. However, there is no extensive genome analysis on this fungal species. Results: Two fungal isolates (UM 1400 and UM 1020) from human specimens were identified as Daldinia eschscholtzii by morphological features and ITS-based phylogenetic analysis. Both genomes were similar in size with 10,822 predicted genes in UM 1400 (35.8 Mb) and 11,120 predicted genes in UM 1020 (35.5 Mb). A total of 751 gene families were shared among both UM isolates, including gene families associated with fungus-host interactions. In the CAZyme comparative analysis, both genomes were found to contain arrays of CAZyme related to plant cell wall degradation. Genes encoding secreted peptidases were found in the genomes, which encode for the peptidases involved in the degradation of structural proteins in plant cell wall. In addition, arrays of secondary metabolite backbone genes were identified in both genomes, indicating of their potential to produce bioactive secondary metabolites. Both genomes also contained an abundance of gene encoding signaling components, with three proposed MAPK cascades involved in cell wall integrity, osmoregulation, and mating/filamentation. Besides genomic evidence for degrading capability, both isolates also harbored an array of genes encoding stress response proteins that are potentially significant for adaptation to living in the hostile environments. Conclusions: Our genomic studies provide further information for the biological understanding of the D. eschscholtzii and suggest that these wood-decaying fungi are also equipped for adaptation to adverse environments in the human host.
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2015 · BMC Genomics
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The outbreak of extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) has become an increasing problem in many TB-burdened countries. The underlying drug resistance mechanisms, including the genetic variation favored by selective pressure in the resistant population, are partially understood. Recently, the first case of XDR-TB was reported in Malaysia. However, the detailed genotype family and mechanisms of the formation of multiple drugs resistance are unknown. We sequenced the whole genome of the UM 1072388579 strain with a 2-kb insert-size library and combined with that from previously sequenced 500-bp-insert paired-end reads to produce an improved sequence with maximal sequencing coverage across the genome. In silico spoligotyping and phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that UM 1072388579 strain belongs to an ancestral-like, non-Beijing clade of East Asia lineage. This is supported by the presence of a number of lineage-specific markers, including fadD28, embA, nuoD and pks7. Polymorphism analysis showed that the drug-susceptibility profile is correlated with the pattern of resistance mutations. Mutations in drug-efflux pumps and the cell wall biogenesis pathway such as mmpL, pks and fadD genes may play an important role in survival and adaptation of this strain to its surrounding environment. In this work, fifty-seven putative promoter SNPs were identified. Among them, we identified a novel SNP located at -4 T allele of TetR/acrR promoter as an informative marker to recognize strains of East Asian lineage. Our work indicates that the UM 1072388579 harbors both classical and uncommon SNPs that allow it to escape from inhibition by many antibiotics. This study provides a strong foundation to dissect the biology and underlying resistance mechanisms of the first reported XDR M. tuberculosis in Malaysia.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2015 · PLoS ONE
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Bipolaris papendorfii has been reported as a fungal plant pathogen that rarely causes opportunistic infection in humans. Secondary metabolites isolated from this fungus possess medicinal and anticancer properties. However, its genetic fundamental and basic biology are largely unknown. In this study, we report the first draft genome sequence of B. papendorfii UM 226 isolated from the skin scraping of a patient. The assembled 33.4 Mb genome encodes 11,015 putative coding DNA sequences, of which, 2.49% are predicted transposable elements. Multilocus phylogenetic and phylogenomic analyses showed B. papendorfii UM 226 clustering with Curvularia species, apart from other plant pathogenic Bipolaris species. Its genomic features suggest that it is a heterothallic fungus with a putative unique gene encoding the LysM-containing protein which might be involved in fungal virulence on host plants, as well as a wide array of enzymes involved in carbohydrate metabolism, degradation of polysaccharides and lignin in the plant cell wall, secondary metabolite biosynthesis (including dimethylallyl tryptophan synthase, non-ribosomal peptide synthetase, polyketide synthase), the terpenoid pathway and the caffeine metabolism. This first genomic characterization of B. papendorfii provides the basis for further studies on its biology, pathogenicity and medicinal potential.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015 · DNA Research
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Brucellosis is an important zoonotic disease that affects both humans and animals. We sequenced the full genome and characterised the genetic diversity of two Brucella melitensis isolates from Malaysia and the Philippines. In addition, we performed a comparative whole-genome single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) analysis of B. melitensis strains collected from around the world, to investigate the potential origin and the history of the global spread of B. melitensis. Single sequencing runs of each genome resulted in draft genome sequences of MY1483/09 and Phil1136/12, which covered 99.85% and 99.92% of the complete genome sequences, respectively. The B. melitensis genome sequences, and two B. abortus strains used as the outgroup strains, yielded a total of 13,728 SNP sites (Additional file 1: Table S1). Phylogenetic analysis using whole-genome SNPs and geographical distribution of the isolates revealed spatial clustering of the B. melitensis isolates into five genotypes, I, II, III, IV and V. The Mediterranean strains, identified as genotype I, occupied the basal node of the phylogenetic tree, suggesting that B. melitensis may have originated from the Mediterranean regions. All of the Asian B. melitensis strains clustered into genotype II with the SEA strains, including the two isolates sequenced in this study, forming a distinct clade denoted here as genotype IId. Genotypes III, IV and V of B. melitensis demonstrated a restricted geographical distribution, with genotype III representing the African lineage, genotype IV representing the European lineage and genotype V representing the American lineage. We showed that SNPs retrieved from the B. melitensis draft full genomes were sufficient to resolve the interspecies relationships between B. melitensis strains and to discriminate between the vaccine and endemic strains. Phylogeographic reconstruction of the history of B. melitensis global spread at a finer scale by using whole-genome SNP analyses supported the origin of all B. melitensis strains from the Mediterranean region. The possible global distribution of B. melitensis following the ancient trade routes was also consistent with whole-genome SNP phylogeny. The whole genome SNP phylogenetics analysis, hence is a powerful tool for intraspecies discrimination of closely related species.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2015 · BMC Genomics
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Dematiaceous fungi (black fungi) are a heterogeneous group of fungi present in diverse environments worldwide. Many species in this group are known to cause allergic reactions and potentially fatal diseases in humans and animals, especially in tropical and subtropical climates. This study represents the first survey of dematiaceous fungi in Malaysia and provides observations on their diversity as well as in vitro response to antifungal drugs. Seventy-five strains isolated from various clinical specimens were identified by morphology as well as an internal transcribed spacer (ITS)-based phylogenetic analysis. The combined molecular and conventional approach enabled the identification of three classes of the Ascomycota phylum and 16 genera, the most common being Cladosporium, Cochliobolus and Neoscytalidium. Several of the species identified have not been associated before with human infections. Among 8 antifungal agents tested, the azoles posaconazole (96%), voriconazole (90.7%), ketoconazole (86.7%) and itraconazole (85.3%) showed in vitro activity (MIC ≤1 µg/mL) to the largest number of strains, followed by anidulafungin (89.3%), caspofungin (74.7%) and amphotericin B (70.7%). Fluconazole appeared to be the least effective with only 10.7% of isolates showing in vitro susceptibility. Overall, almost half (45.3%) of the isolates showed reduced susceptibility (MIC >1 µg/mL) to at least one antifungal agent, and three strains (one Pyrenochaeta unguis-hominis and two Nigrospora oryzae) showed potential multidrug resistance.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2014 · PLoS ONE
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Ochroconis constricta is a soilborne dematiaceous fungus that has never been reported to be associated with human infection. Here we report the first draft genome sequence of strain UM 578, isolated from human skin scraping. The genomic information revealed will contribute to a better understanding of this species.
    Full-text · Article · Mar 2014 · Genome Announcements
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Pyrenochaeta, classified under the order Pleosporales, is known to cause diseases in plants and humans. Here, we report a draft genome sequence of a Pyrenochaeta sp. isolated from a skin scraping, with an estimated genome size of 39.4 Mb. Genes associated with the synthesis of proteases, toxins, plant cell wall degradation, and multidrug resistance were found.
    Full-text · Article · May 2013 · Genome Announcements
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The emergence of the global threat of extensively drug-resistant (XDR) Mycobacterium tuberculosis reveals weaknesses in tuberculosis management and diagnostic services. We report the draft genome sequence of the first extensively drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis strain isolated in Malaysia. The sequence was also compared against a reference strain to elucidate the polymorphism that is related to their extensive resistance.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2013 · Genome Announcements
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Herpotrichiellaceae spp. are known to be opportunistic human pathogens. Here, we report the ~28.46-Mb draft genome of Herpotrichiellaceae sp. UM 238, isolated from human skin scraping. The UM 238 genome was found to contain many classes of protective genes that are responsible for fungal adaptation under adverse environmental conditions.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2013 · Genome Announcements
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Pleosporales is the largest order in the fungal class Dothideomycetes. We report the 36,814,818-bp draft genome sequence and gene annotation of UM1110, a Pleosporales isolate associated with unclassified genera that is potentially a new fungal species. Analysis of the genome sequence led to the finding of genes associated with fungal adhesive proteins, secreted proteases, allergens, and pseudohyphal development.
    Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Eukaryotic Cell

Publication Stats

14 Citations
26.33 Total Impact Points

Institutions

  • 2012-2014
    • University of Malaya
      • Department of Medical Microbiology
      Kuala Lumpor, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia