Volume 21, Number 6—June 2015
A soil fungus found in the western United States and parts of Mexico and Central and South America,Coccidioides was discovered in 1892 by Alejandro Posadas, a medical student, in an Argentinian soldier with widespread disease. Biopsy specimens revealed organisms that resembled the protozoan Coccidia (from the Greek kokkis, “little berry”). In 1896, Gilchrist and Rixford named the organism Coccidioides (“resemblingCoccidia”) immitis (Latin for “harsh,” describing the clinical course). Ophüls and Moffitt proved that C. immitiswas a fungus rather than a protozoan in 1900. In 2002, C. immitis was divided into a second species, C. posadasii, after Alejandro Posadas.
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Suggested citation for this article: Etymologia: Coccidioides. Emerg Infect Dis. 2015 Jun [date cited]. http://dx.doi.org/10.3201/eid2106.ET2106