Antigiardial activity of Ocimum basilicum essential oil
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In this study, we investigated the effects of Ocimum basilicum essential oil on Giardia lamblia and on the modulation of the interaction of these parasites by peritoneal mouse macrophage. The essential oil (2 mg/ml) and its purified substances demonstrated antigiardial activity. Linalool (300 μg/ml), however, was able to kill 100% parasites after 1 h of incubation, which demonstrates its high antigiardial potential. Pretreatment of peritoneal mouse macrophages with 2 mg/ml essential oil dilution reduced in 79% the association index between these macrophages and G. lamblia, with a concomitant increase by 153% on nitric oxide production by the G. lamblia-ingested macrophages. The protein profiles and proteolitic activity of these parasite trophozoites, previously treated or not with 2 mg/ml essential oil or with the purified fractions, were also determined. After 1 and 2 h of incubation, proteins of lysates and culture supernatants revealed significant differences in bands patterns when compared to controls. Besides, the proteolitic activity, mainly of cysteine proteases, was clearly inhibited by the essential oil (2 mg/ml) and the purified linalool (300 μg/ml). These results suggest that, with G. lamblia, the essential oil from O. basilicum and its purified compounds, specially linalool, have a potent antimicrobial activity.
We thank Ms. Camilla M. Fortunato and Ms. Simone S. dos Santos for technical support. This work was supported by Fundação de Amparo a Pesquisa no Estado do Rio de Janeiro (FAPERJ), Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico (CNPq), Fundação Universitária José Bonifácio (FUJB), and Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior (CAPES).
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