Rhodotorula spp. are yeast that produce a carotenoid pigment ranging from yellowish to red that can be visualized with individual colonies. Rhodotorula can produce multilateral budding yeast cells, and occasional production of true hyphae or pseudohyphae. The budding yeast are 5-8 µm and are narrow-based. Rhodotorula can be isolated from soil, water, fruit juices, milk products, shower curtains, and toothbrushes.
Immunocompromised patients, especially those with central venous catheters or other indwelling catheters, are at high risk for infections, most commonly presenting as fungemia. Other types of infection include endocarditis, meningitis, peritonitis, and ocular infection. Prophylaxis or treatment with fluconazole has been recognized as a risk factor for fungemia.