Existing antifungal drugs are notable for their inability to act rapidly, as well as their toxicity and limited spectrum. The identification of fungal-specific genes and virulence factors would provide targets for new and influential drugs. The display of repertories of antibody fragments on the surface of filamentous phage offers a new way to produce immunoreagents as defined specificities. Here we report the selection of Cryptococcus-specific targets by using phage-display panning from a cDNA library, where bactericidal antibodies have been developed against conserved surface-exposed antigens. A single-chain variable fragment (scFv) phage library was constructed from splenocyte of an immunized mouse by idiotypic vaccination with HM-1 killer toxin (HM-1) neutralizing monoclonal antibody (nmAb-KT) that was used for selection against Cryptococcus neoformans membrane fraction (CnMF). Key elements were the selection against antigen (nmAb-KT and CnMF) and the release of bound phages using competitive panning elution with CnMF at neutral pH condition. Isolated scFvs react specifically with C. neoformans and some other pathogenic and non-pathogenic fungal strain's cell wall receptors by exerting strong antifungal activity in vitro. A high affinity clone, designated M1 was selected for detailed characterization and tested anti-cryptococcal activity with IC50 values at 5.33 × 10−7 to 5.56 × 10−7 M against C. neoformans. The method described here is a new technique for the isolation of cell membrane specific immunoreactive phages in the form of scFv using CnMF that contained cell membrane associated proteins. Copyright © 2011 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.