|Description:||This image depicts an old-field mouse, Peromyscus polionotus, which is a carrier of the dermatophytic fungus, Trichophyton mentagrophytes.|
Dermatophytes are fungi that cause skin, hair, and nail infections in both humans and animals. Infections caused by these fungi are also sometimes known as "ringworm" or "tinea." Despite the name "ringworm," this infection is not caused by a worm, but by a type of fungus called a dermatophyte. Dermatophytes can live on moist areas of the skin, on environmental surfaces, and on household items such as clothing, towels, and bedding.