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RESEARCH ARTICLE
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 49  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 143-150

Effect of ivermectin on trypanosoma brucei brucei in experimentally infected mice


1 Centre for Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, Jackson State University, Jackson, USA
2 Department of Medical Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Medicine, University of Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
Udensi K Udensi
Centre for Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, Jackson State University, Jackson, Mississippi, MS 39217
USA
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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Background & objectives: Human and livestock African trypanosomiasis, otherwise known as sleeping sickness, is a neglected tropical disease of public health importance in west and central Africa. In view of the adverse side effects of the antitrypanosomal drugs, the relatively few side effects observed in ivermectin use, and because both onchocerciasis and typanosomiasis occur in overlapping foci in Africa, it would be desirable if the ivermectin that has been used successfully on onchocerciasis management could also be used in the control and treatment of trypanosomiasis. Method: In this study, prophylactic and therapeutic effects of ivermectin (Mectizan) were investigated in albino mice infected with a Nigerian strain of Trypanosoma brucei brucei. Results: A 300 μg/ml/kg dose had the most effective impact because it showed the highest mean survival time of 12 days in both the treatment and prophylactic groups of mice. This dose also enhanced the defence capacity of the treated groups. It also had positive influence on the packed cell volume (PCV) and the state of anaemia in the trypanosome infected mice, hence, improving their survivability. Interpretation & conclusions: Our report indicates that using the 300 μg/ml/kg dose of ivermectin increases the mean survival period from 5 to 12 days. This suggests that ivermectin could be possibly used in the treatment of trypanosomiasis. Further studies will be required to show whether proper treatment may entail a single dose, as used in this study; an increased number of doses, or combinations with other drugs.


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