In vitro amoebicidal activity of ethanol extracts of Arachis hypogaea L., Curcuma longa L. and Pancratium maritimum L. on Acanthamoeba castellanii cysts.
Parasitol Res. 2011 Dec 7. Epub 2011 Dec 7. PMID: 22146994
Parasitology Department, Research Institute of Ophthalmology, Giza, Egypt, [email protected]
Acanthamoeba castellanii causes amoebic keratitis which is a painful sight-threatening disease of the eyes. Its eradication is difficult because the amoebas encyst making it highly resistant to anti-amoebic drugs, but several medicinal plants have proven to be more effective than the usual therapy. This study aimed to evaluate the in vitro amoebicidal activity of ethanol extracts of Arachis hypogaea L. (peanut), Curcuma longa L. (turmeric), and Pancratium maritimum L. (sea daffodil) on A. castellanii cysts. Acanthamoeba were isolated from keratitic patients, cultivated on 1.5% non-nutrient agar, and then incubated with different concentrations of plant extracts which were further evaluated for their cysticidal activity. The results showed that all extracts had significant inhibitory effect on the multiplication of Acanthamoeba cysts as compared to the drug control (chlorhexidine) and non-treated control, and the inhibition was time and dose dependent. The ethanol extract of A. hypogaea had a remarkable cysticidal effect with minimal inhibitory concentration (MIC) of 100 mg/ml in all incubation periods, while the concentrations of 10 and 1 mg/ml were able to completely inhibit growth after 48 and 72 h, respectively. The concentrations 0.1 and 0.01 mg/ml failed to completely inhibit the cyst growth, but showed growth reduction by 64.4-82.6% in all incubation periods. C. longa had a MIC of 1 g and 100 mg/ml after 48 and 72 h, respectively, while the concentrations 10, 1, and 0.1 mg/ml caused growth reduction by 60-90.3% in all incubation periods. P. maritimum had a MIC of 200 mg/ml after 72 h, while the 20-, 2-, 0.2-, and 0.02-mg/ml concentrations showed growth reduction by 34-94.3% in all incubation periods. All extracts seemed to be more effective than chlorhexidine which caused only growth reduction by 55.3-80.2% in all incubation periods and failed to completely inhibit the cyst growth. In conclusion, ethanol extracts of A. hypogaea, C. longa, and P. maritimum could be considered a new natural agent against the Acanthamoeba cyst.