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Exp Parasitol. 2007 Jul;116(3):283-90. Epub 2007 Feb 1.

Trypanosoma cruzi: activity of essential oils from Achillea millefolium L., Syzygium aromaticum L. and Ocimum basilicum L. on epimastigotes and trypomastigotes.

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Laboratório de Biologia Celular de Microrganismos, Departamento de Ultra-estrutura e Biologia Celular, Instituto Oswaldo Cruz/FIOCRUZ, 21045-900 Rio de Janeiro, RJ, Brazil.


Trypanocidal activity of clove (Syzygium aromaticum L.), basil (Ocimum basilicum L.) and yarrow (Achillea millefolium L.) essential oils and some of their constituents (eugenol and linalool) was investigated on Trypanosoma cruzi epimastigote and bloodstream trypomastigote forms. Steam distillation was used to isolate the essential oils, with chemical analyses performed by gas chromatography (GC) and GC coupled to mass spectrometry (GC-MS). The IC(50) (concentration that inhibits 50% parasite growth) of the oils and constituents upon T. cruzi was determined by cell counting in a Neubauer chamber. Cell morphology alterations were observed by scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Treatment with oils and constituents demonstrated that they inhibit parasite growth, with clove essential being the most effective one (IC(50)=99.5 microg/ml for epimastigotes and 57.5 microg/ml for trypomastigotes). Ultrastructural alterations were observed mainly in the nucleus.

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