The infection that killed two people in the US prevents people from breathing and causes swelling of the brain. The fact that fungal species thrive in warmer and more humid conditions means that climate change is making the threat of epidemics more likely.

The next pandemic could be caused by a fungal infection, according to a US fungal expert.  The infection, which has killed two people in the US, stops people breathing and causes swelling of the brain. The fact that fungal species thrive in warmer and more humid conditions means climate change is making the threat of pandemics more likely.

Experts warn: Risk of deadly "fungal outbreak" on the rise

A US expert has claimed that there could be an increase in "deadly" fungal infections that prevent breathing and cause brain swelling.

A fungal "epidemic" could be a scenario seen in the next few years. Fungal expert Dr. Ian Hennessee said that the "blastomycosis" fungal strain is currently one of the most pressing concerns.

Explaining why the possibility of a fungal epidemic is important, Dr. Hennessee said, "We encourage people to think about fungi because fungal cases are increasing. They are usually rare, but when they do occur in people they are often misdiagnosed and under-reported. This can have really serious consequences."

CLIMATE CHANGE IS THE BIGGEST CAUSE OF SPREAD 

Important warnings from experts: These factors cause heart attacks! Important warnings from experts: These factors cause heart attacks!

Fungal species thrive in warmer and more humid conditions, which means climate change makes the threat of epidemics more likely.

Experts are concerned that as we see environmental conditions change, the distribution of fungal diseases such as histoplasmosis, valley fever and others could change and become epidemic.

In severe cases, "blastomycosis" can spread from the lungs to other parts of the body, such as the skin, bones and joints, causing painful lesions and boils.

Michigan resident Ian Pritchard, 29, became one of the first US citizens to die from shortness of breath caused by the fungus. Fungal diseases in the US increased from 4,746 cases recorded in 2018 to 7,199 in 2021.