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Iran J Parasitol. 2012;7(2):21-8.

Inhibition of Murine Systemic Leishmaniasis by Acetyl Salicylic Acid via Nitric Oxide Immunomodulation.

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Department of Parasitology, Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran.



The purpose of this study was to evaluate antileishmanial effects of ASA via NO pathway in Leishmania major infected Balb/c mice. Moreover, toxicity and pathological consequences of ASA administration were investigated.


Balb/c mice were infected with L. major and ASA was inoculated orally after lesion appearance for its ability to modulate NO and to modify Leishmania infection in host, in order to evaluate the effects of NO production on size and lesion macroscopy, delay of lesion formation and proliferation of amastigotes inside macrophages. Liver, spleen, and lymph nodes were also studied as target organs to detect amastigotes. In addition, plasma was investigated for NO induction using Griess microassay.


ASA increased NO production in plasma of both naïve and Leishmania test groups at the ultimate of the experimental period. A decline was observed in proliferation of amastigotes inside macrophages of test group when compared with control one. ASA reduced lesion size, inhibited Leishmania visceralisation in spleen, lymph node, and decreased hepato/splenomegaly in ASA treated animals.


Some antileishmanial effects of ASA by NO-modulation were indicated during systemic leishmaniasis in mice. Despite slight effects on lesion size, ASA decreased parasite visceralization in target organs and declined their proliferation inside macrophages. Therefore, ASA may be indicated to inhibit systemic leishmaniasis via NO pathway in mice model.


ASA; Balb/c; Immunotherapy; Leishmania major; NO


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