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Exp Parasitol. 2013 Feb;133(2):211-6. doi: 10.1016/j.exppara.2012.11.006. Epub 2012 Nov 29.

Anti-Trichomonas vaginalis activity of marine-associated fungi from the South Brazilian Coast.

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Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Av. Ipiranga, 2752, 90610-000 Porto Alegre, RS, Brazil.


Trichomonas vaginalis is the causative agent of trichomonosis, the most common non-viral sexually transmitted disease. Infection with this protozoan may have serious consequences, especially for women. Currently, 5-nitroimidazole drugs are the treatment of choice for trichomonosis, but the emergence of resistance has limited the effectiveness of this therapy. In this context, this study aimed to evaluate the anti-T. vaginalis activity of marine-associated fungi found in the South Brazilian Coast. A total of 42 marine-associated fungal species (126 filtrate samples) isolated from 39 different marine organisms, mainly sponges, were selected to be screened against T. vaginalis. Of these, two filtrate samples from Hypocrea lixii F02 and Penicillium citrinum F40 showed significant growth-inhibitory activity (up to 100%) against ATCC 30236 and fresh clinical isolates, including a metronidazole-resistant isolate. Minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) values of H. lixii F02 and P. citrinum F40 samples for all isolates tested, including the metronidazole-resistant isolate, were 2.5 mg/mL. The kinetic growth curve showed that the filtrate samples were able to reduce the density of parasites to zero within 24 h of incubation, which was confirmed by microscopy. Both fungal filtrate samples exhibited no hemolytic activity, and the P. citrinum F40 filtrate sample showed low cytotoxicity against Vero cells. These data suggest that marine-associated fungi from the South Brazilian Coast may produce potential candidates for further investigation and possible use in the treatment of metronidazole-resistant trichomonosis.

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