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Open AccessArticle

Silver Nanoparticles as a Novel Potential Preventive Agent against Acanthamoeba Keratitis

Instituto Universitario de Enfermedades Tropicales y Salud Pública de Canarias and Departamento de Obstetricia, Ginecología, Pediatría, Medicina Preventiva y Salud Pública, Toxicología, Medicina Legal y Forense y Parasitología, Universidad de La Laguna. Av. Astrofísico Francisco Sánchez S/N, 38203 Tenerife, Spain
Department of Medical Biology, Medical University of Warsaw, Litewska 14/16, 00-575 Warsaw, Poland
Laboratoire Matériaux-Molécules et Applications, La Marsa, University of Carthage, 2070 Carthage, Tunisia
Department of Nanobiotechnology and Experimental Ecology, Institute of Biology, Warsaw University of Life Sciences, 02-787 Warsaw, Poland
Department of Pharmaceutical Microbiology, Centre for Preclinical Research and Technology (CePT), Faculty of Pharmacy, Medical University of Warsaw, Banacha 1B, 02-097 Warsaw, Poland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Pathogens 2020, 9(5), 350;
Received: 21 April 2020 / Revised: 3 May 2020 / Accepted: 4 May 2020 / Published: 5 May 2020
Free living, cosmopolitan amoebae from Acanthamoeba genus present a serious risk to human health. As facultative human parasites, these amoebae may cause Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK). Acanthamoeba keratitis is a severe, vision-threatening corneal infection with non-specific symptoms. The number of reported AK cases worldwide has been increasing every year. Moreover, 90% of Acanthamoeba keratitis cases are related to contact lens use. Wearing and storage contact lenses not in accordance with the physicians and manufacturers recommendations are the primary key risk factors of this disease. Amoebae can easily adhere to the contact lens surface and transmit to the corneal epithelium. Preventing amoebae adhesion to the contact lens surface could significantly decrease the number of AK infections. Until now, the effective therapy against AK is still under development. Currently proposed therapies are mainly limited to the chlorhexidine digluconate combined with propamidine isethionate or hexamidine applications, which are insufficient and very toxic to the eye. Due to lack of effective treatment, looking for new potential preventive agents is crucial to decrease the number of Acanthamoeba keratitis infections, especially among contact lens users. Nanoparticles have been already included in several novel therapies against bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protist. However, their anti-amoebic potential has not been fully tested yet. The aim of this study was to assess silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) and platinum nanoparticles (PtNPs) anti-amoebic activity and influence on the amoebae adhesion to the surface of four different groups of contact lenses—classified according to the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) guidelines. The obtained results show that both tested nanoparticles were effective against Acanthamoeba trophozoites and decreased the amoebae adhesion to the contact lens surface. AgNPs showed better anti-amoebic activity to cytotoxicity dependence and reduced amoebae adhesion in a wider spectrum of the tested contact lenses. Our studies also confirmed that ionization next to hydration of the contact lens material is a crucial parameter influencing the Acanthamoeba adhesion to the contact lens surface. In conclusion, silver nanoparticles might be considered as a novel preventive agent against Acanthamoeba keratitis infection. View Full-Text
Keywords: Acanthamoeba; keratitis; nanoparticles; contact lenses; adhesion Acanthamoeba; keratitis; nanoparticles; contact lenses; adhesion
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Hendiger, E.B.; Padzik, M.; Sifaoui, I.; Reyes-Batlle, M.; López-Arencibia, A.; Rizo-Liendo, A.; Bethencourt-Estrella, C.J.; San Nicolás-Hernández, D.; Chiboub, O.; Rodríguez-Expósito, R.L.; Grodzik, M.; Pietruczuk-Padzik, A.; Stępień, K.; Olędzka, G.; Chomicz, L.; Piñero, J.E.; Lorenzo-Morales, J. Silver Nanoparticles as a Novel Potential Preventive Agent against Acanthamoeba Keratitis. Pathogens 2020, 9, 350.

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