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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 11  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 19-24

L-cysteine whether a nutritional booster or a radical scavenger for Plasmodium

1 Department of Medical Parasitology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India
2 Department of Pharmacology, Government Medical College and Hospital, Chandigarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Rakesh Sehgal
Department of Medical Parasitology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh - 160 012
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/tp.TP_20_18

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Introduction: Plasmodium falciparum is the most noxious species among other Plasmodium species that cause malaria. Attention is required to understand more about the pathophysiology and parasite biology to obscure this disease. The fact is, very little is known about the nutritional requirement in sense of carbohydrate, lipid, nucleic acid, and amino acid metabolism that regulate the growth of parasite and out of this, studies related to the metabolism of amino acid are exceptionally limited. Out of several amino acids, L-cysteine is essential for the continuous erythrocytic growth of Plasmodium. However, the exact role of L-cysteine in regulating the growth of Plasmodium is unknown. Here, we tried to investigate how does L-cysteine affects the growth of Plasmodium in in vitro culture, and also the study was aimed to find whether there is a synergism with chloroquine on the Plasmodium growth in vitro. Materials and Methods: Parasite inhibition assay based on schizont maturation inhibition following WHO protocol on P. falciparum chloroquine-sensitive strain (MRC-2) was employed to determine IC50 value and drug interaction pattern was shown through fractional inhibitory concentration index. Results: Inhibitory effect of L-cysteine hydrochloride on Plasmodium growth was depicted with IC50 1.152 ± 0.287 μg/mL and the most synergistic pattern of interaction was shown with chloroquine. Conclusions: The present study anticipates two important findings, firstly inconsistent results from previous findings and secondly, synergistic effect with chloroquine suggests its potency that may be used as an add-on therapy along with chloroquine. However, further study is needed to validate the above findings in vivo models.

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