Nanoparticle-Terpene Fusion: A Game-Changer in Combating Primary Amoebic Meningoencephalitis Caused by Naegleria fowleri


ACS Omega. 2024 Mar 1;9(10):11597-11607. doi: 10.1021/acsomega.3c08844. eCollection 2024 Mar 12.


Pathogenic Naegleria fowleri (N. fowleri) are opportunistic free-living amoebae and are the causative agents of a very rare but severe brain infection called primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). The fatality rate of PAM in reported cases is more than 95%. Most of the drugs used againstN. fowleri infections are repurposed drugs. Therefore, a large number of compounds have been tested againstN. fowleri in vitro, but most of the tested compounds showed high toxicity and an inability to cross the blood-brain barrier. Andrographolide, forskolin, and borneol are important natural compounds that have shown various valuable biological properties. In the present study, the nanoconjugates (AND-AgNPs, BOR-AgNPs, and FOR-AgNPs) of these compounds were synthesized and assessed against both stages (trophozoite and cyst) ofN. fowleri for their antiamoebic and cysticidal potential in vitro. In addition, cytotoxicity and host cell pathogenicity were also evaluated in vitro. FOR-AgNPs were the most potent nanoconjugate and showed potent antiamoebic activity againstN. fowleriwith an IC50 of 26.35 μM. Nanoconjugates FOR-AgNPs, BOR-AgNPs, and AND-AgNPs also significantly inhibit the viability of N. fowleri cysts. Cytotoxicity assessment showed that these nanoconjugates caused minimum damage to human keratinocyte cells (HaCaT cells) at 100 μg/mL, while also effectively reducing the cytopathogenicity of N. fowleri trophozoites to the HaCaT cells. The outcomes of our experiments have unveiled substantial potential for AND-AgNPs, BOR-AgNPs, and FOR-AgNPs in the realm of developing innovative alternative therapeutic agents to combat infections caused by N. fowleri. This study represents a significant step forward in the pursuit of advanced strategies for managing such amoebic infections, laying the foundation for the development of novel and more effective therapeutic modalities in the fight against free-living amoebae.

PMID:38497026 | PMC:PMC10938409 | DOI:10.1021/acsomega.3c08844