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Antifungal effects of indolicidin-conjugated gold nanoparticles against fluconazole-resistant strains of Candida albicans isolated from patients with burn infection

Authors Rahimi H, Roudbarmohammadi S, Delavari H H, Roudbary M

Received 4 March 2019

Accepted for publication 11 June 2019

Published 17 July 2019 Volume 2019:14 Pages 5323—5338

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/IJN.S207527

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Prof. Dr. Thomas J. Webster


Hossein Rahimi,1 Shahla Roudbarmohammadi,1 Hamid Delavari H,2 Maryam Roudbary3

1Department of Medical Mycology, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran; 2Department of Materials Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran; 3Department of Medical Mycology and Parasitology, School of Medicine, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran

Background: Candida albicans as an opportunistic fungus is one of the most important causes of late-onset morbidity and mortality in patients with major burns and severely impaired immune system. In recent years, the emergence of resistance to opportunistic fungi and toxicity of antimicrobial drugs make it necessary to develop new drugs.
Methods: In the present study, we investigated anticandidal effects of indolicidin, as a representative of host defense peptide, conjugated with gold nanoparticles in fluconazole-resistant clinical isolates of C. albicans. After characterizing the conjugation of indolicidin using biophysical methodologies, the cytotoxicity and hemolytic activity of the nanocomplex were examined. In addition, the expression level of ERG11, responsible for antifungal resistance, and the immunomodulatory effect of peptide-nanomaterial conjugates were assessed.
Results: Our data indicated that the nanocomplex was nontoxic for the fibroblast cells and erythrocytes. Treatment with the nanocomplex significantly reduced the expression levels of the ERG11 gene in fluconazole-resistant C. albicans isolates and the iNOS gene in macrophages.
Conclusion: The study data provides a chance to develop innovative therapies for the treatment of C. albicans burn infections. However, further investigation is required to examine the efficiency of the nanocomplex.

Keywords: burn infection, Candida albicans, indolicidin, gold nanoparticles, antimicrobial peptides

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