Candida spp. are commensal organisms of the skin, mucous membranes, gastrointestinal tract, blood, and vagina of animals and humans. In recent decades, the incidence of human fungal infections has increased, with Candida spp. (mainly C. albicans) infections being the most frequent, and the treatment of fungal infections is still a clinical challenge. Colonization of the human gastrointestinal tract by Candida spp. is significant because infections (e.g., candidemia and vulvovaginal candidiasis) frequently arise from commensal microorganisms. The aim of this study was to test in vitro the antifungal activity and the eventual synergistic effect of five pure components of essential oils: cinnamaldehyde, α-pinene, limonene, eucalyptol, and eugenol. These compounds were tested on 18 Candida strains (15 C. albicans, 2 C. glabrata, and 1 C. lusitaniae) derived from a culture collection of vaginal clinical strains. Methods: Fungistatic activity was evaluated using the disk diffusion method. For fungicidal activity, microdilution and time–kill curve protocols were set up. The checkerboard method was chosen to evaluate a possible synergistic effect of these compounds when mixed. Results: Cinnamaldehyde and eugenol gave the best results, inhibiting all the Candida strains and showing a highly additive effect (FICI 0.625). The cinnamaldehyde inhibition zone (IZ), MIC, and MFC means were 69 mm, 50.05 mg/L, and 109.26 mg/L respectively. Cinnamaldehyde led to the total loss of viable Candida cells within 4 h. Eugenol IZ, MIC, and MFC means were 35.2 mm, 455.42 mg/L, and 690.09 mg/L, respectively. Eugenol led to the total loss of viable fungal cells within 1 h. Treatment with α-pinene inhibited 88.9% of Candida strains, with an IZ mean of 21.2 mm, a MIC mean of 195.41 mg/L, and a MFC mean of 251.27 mg/L; this compound led to the total loss of viable fungal cells only after 24 h. Limonene inhibited only 33.3% of the tested strains and eucalyptol did not produce an inhibition halo, so these compounds were not tested further. Conclusions: These characteristics, together with the well-known safety of cinnamaldehyde and eugenol for human use, make these two natural compounds the perfect candidates for the treatment of candidiasis. This was a pilot study, the purpose of which was to evaluate the best composition of a mixture to be used against intestinal and vulvovaginal candidiasis; in vivo studies are needed to confirm these very encouraging results.

Antifungal Activity of Natural Compounds vs. Candida spp.: A Mixture of Cinnamaldehyde and Eugenol Shows Promising In Vitro Results

Saracino I. M.;Foschi C.;Pavoni M.;Spigarelli R.;Valerii M. C.;Spisni E.
2022

Abstract

Candida spp. are commensal organisms of the skin, mucous membranes, gastrointestinal tract, blood, and vagina of animals and humans. In recent decades, the incidence of human fungal infections has increased, with Candida spp. (mainly C. albicans) infections being the most frequent, and the treatment of fungal infections is still a clinical challenge. Colonization of the human gastrointestinal tract by Candida spp. is significant because infections (e.g., candidemia and vulvovaginal candidiasis) frequently arise from commensal microorganisms. The aim of this study was to test in vitro the antifungal activity and the eventual synergistic effect of five pure components of essential oils: cinnamaldehyde, α-pinene, limonene, eucalyptol, and eugenol. These compounds were tested on 18 Candida strains (15 C. albicans, 2 C. glabrata, and 1 C. lusitaniae) derived from a culture collection of vaginal clinical strains. Methods: Fungistatic activity was evaluated using the disk diffusion method. For fungicidal activity, microdilution and time–kill curve protocols were set up. The checkerboard method was chosen to evaluate a possible synergistic effect of these compounds when mixed. Results: Cinnamaldehyde and eugenol gave the best results, inhibiting all the Candida strains and showing a highly additive effect (FICI 0.625). The cinnamaldehyde inhibition zone (IZ), MIC, and MFC means were 69 mm, 50.05 mg/L, and 109.26 mg/L respectively. Cinnamaldehyde led to the total loss of viable Candida cells within 4 h. Eugenol IZ, MIC, and MFC means were 35.2 mm, 455.42 mg/L, and 690.09 mg/L, respectively. Eugenol led to the total loss of viable fungal cells within 1 h. Treatment with α-pinene inhibited 88.9% of Candida strains, with an IZ mean of 21.2 mm, a MIC mean of 195.41 mg/L, and a MFC mean of 251.27 mg/L; this compound led to the total loss of viable fungal cells only after 24 h. Limonene inhibited only 33.3% of the tested strains and eucalyptol did not produce an inhibition halo, so these compounds were not tested further. Conclusions: These characteristics, together with the well-known safety of cinnamaldehyde and eugenol for human use, make these two natural compounds the perfect candidates for the treatment of candidiasis. This was a pilot study, the purpose of which was to evaluate the best composition of a mixture to be used against intestinal and vulvovaginal candidiasis; in vivo studies are needed to confirm these very encouraging results.
ANTIBIOTICS
Saracino I.M.; Foschi C.; Pavoni M.; Spigarelli R.; Valerii M.C.; Spisni E.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11585/846935
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