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J Parasitol. 2003 Jun;89(3):604-6.

Clotrimazole, ketoconazole, and clodinafop-propargyl as potent growth inhibitors of equine Babesia parasites during in vitro culture.

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  • 1National Research Center for Protozoan Diseases, Obihiro University of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine, Inada-cho, Obihiro, Hokkaido 080-8555, Japan.


The antifungal agents clotrimazole (CLT) and ketoconazole (KC) and the herbicide clodinafop-propargyl (CP) inhibit growth of Plasmodium sp., Toxoplasma sp., and Trypanosoma sp. In the present study, we evaluated these drugs against the in vitro growth of the equine protozoan parasites Babesia equi and B. caballi. Clotrimazole (IC50: 2 and 17 microM), KC (IC50: 6 and 22 microM), and CP (IC50: 450 and 354 microM) were effective growth inhibitors. Interestingly, intraerythrocytic KC-treated Babesia sp. were observed to be in immediate contact with the plasma fraction of the blood in electron microscopy. These results demonstrate the babesiacidial activities of these compounds and suggest their chemotherapeutic potential for the treatment of equine babesioses.

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