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Coccidian Parasites in Livestock and Small Animals

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Front. Vet. Sci. | doi: 10.3389/fvets.2019.00055

Acetonic fraction of Bidens pilosa enriched for maturase k is able to control cerebral parasite burden in mice experimentally infected with Toxoplasma gondii

  • 1Federal University of Uberlandia, Brazil
  • 2Universidade Estadual de Santa Cruz, Brazil

Toxoplasma gondii infection can cause abortions or congenital infection for a vast number of domestic animals and humans, leading to economic loss in veterinary sciences, as well as severe consequences for immunocompromised patients. Bidens pilosa Linné has been used in ethnopharmacology for treatment of diseases, as malaria, diabetes and hepatitis, in addition to its use as antioxidant, antiallergic, anti-inflammatory and antiviral. The components of this plant have never been studied before for treatment of toxoplasmosis, and the conventional drugs currently used to treat this disease have high degree of toxicity. Thus, the aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of B. pilosa against T. gondii, by analyzing a total extract of this plant in parallel with a fraction obtained by precipitation in acetone. Also, it was assessed if the acetonic fraction could present lectinic activity, followed by its identification by mass spectrometry. It was observed with the experimental models designed that both total extract and acetonic fraction of B. pilosa were able to control T. gondii infection by in vitro and in vivo experiments, in addition to their low toxicity to host cells. Both total extract and acetonic fraction of this plant display capacity to impair replication of T. gondii tachyzoites. Interesting, the B. pilosa acetonic fraction treatment for 10 days after infection decreases significantly the number of T. gondii brain cyst in comparison with controls. The protein isolated from B. pilosa acetonic fraction was characterized as a novel lectin identified as maturase K. Taken together, these findings open new perspectives to treat patients infected by T. gondii. Future studies will be necessary to investigate the precise mechanism underlying the control of T. gondii infection to impair the replication of this parasite in the host cells after treatment with B. pilosa maturase K.

Keywords: Toxoplasma gondii, Bidens pilosa, Total and acetonic extracts, maturase K, Infection Control

Received: 14 Sep 2018; Accepted: 07 Feb 2019.

Edited by:

Gastón Moré, Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas (CONICET), Argentina

Reviewed by:

Andrew Hemphill, University of Bern, Switzerland
Xiaokai Song, Nanjing Agricultural University, China
Lais Pardini, Facultad de Ciencias Veterinarias, Universidad Nacional de La Plata, Argentina  

Copyright: © 2019 Mota, Santiago, Cardoso, Rostkowska, Oliveira, Silva, Pirovani, Mineo and Mineo. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence: Prof. José R. Mineo, Federal University of Uberlandia, Uberlândia, Brazil,