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Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2014;18(3):333-7.

Antiviral activity of Holothuria sp. a sea cucumber against herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1).

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The Persian Gulf Marine Biotechnology Research Center, Bushehr University of Medical Sciences, Bushehr, Iran.



Finding the new bioactive compounds with antiviral activity from the natural resources are in interest of many drug discovery scientists. Sea cucumber is among the marine organisms a traditional food item in Asia with different applications in traditional medicine.


In current study, a cold water extract of the Holothuria sp, one type Persian Gulf's sea cucumber was evaluated for its antiviral effects against KOS strain of Herpes Simplex Virus tyoe 1 (HSV-1) in cell culture. The half maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) values were calculated for anti-adsorption activity and intracellular antiviral activity of the crude extract separately.


The extract exhibited antiviral activity not only against the virus adsorption to the cells, but also on virus intracellular replication. The CC50 for sea cucumber extract was 32.57 mg/ml. The IC50 values for the inhibition of the virus adsorption to the cells and virus intracellular replication were 120.2 and 189.9 µg/ml respectively. Selectivity index (SI) value for anti-adsorption activity was 189 while that value for the extract's intracellular antiviral activity was 172.


The results showed that Holothuria sp, water extract has remarkable antiviral effect against HSV-1 in cell culture and it is crucial to investigate the mechanism(s) of action of extract. Moreover, identification of the effective compound(s) within the extract would be necessary for future studies towards developing the new natural antiviral agent against HSV-1.

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