Nanocarrier Drug Conjugates Exhibit Potent Anti-Naegleria fowleri and Anti-Balamuthia mandrillaris Properties

Ruqaiyyah Siddiqui, Anania Boghossian, Muhammad Kawish, Tooba Jabri, Muhammad Raza Shah, Tengku Shahrul Anuar, Zainab Al-Shareef, Naveed Ahmed Khan

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Given the opportunity and access, pathogenic protists (Balamuthia mandrillaris and Naegleria fowleri) can produce fatal infections involving the central nervous system. In the absence of effective treatments, there is a need to either develop new antimicrobials or enhance the efficacy of existing compounds. Nanocarriers as drug delivery systems are gaining increasing attention in the treatment of parasitic infections. In this study, novel nanocarriers conjugated with amphotericin B and curcumin were evaluated for anti-amoebic efficacy against B. mandrillaris and N. fowleri. The results showed that nanocarrier conjugated amphotericin B exhibited enhanced cidal properties against both amoebae tested compared with the drug alone. Similarly, nanocarrier conjugated curcumin exhibited up to 75% cidal effects versus approx. 50% cidal effects for curcumin alone. Cytopathogenicity assays revealed that the pre-treatment of both parasites with nanoformulated-drugs reduced parasite-mediated host cellular death compared with the drugs alone. Importantly, the cytotoxic effects of amphotericin B on human cells alone were reduced when conjugated with nanocarriers. These are promising findings and further suggest the need to explore nanocarriers as a means to deliver medicine against parasitic infections.
Original languageEnglish
Article number58
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 6 Apr 2023


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