Hydroxychavicol: A phytochemical targeting cutaneous fungal infections
The present study was designed to investigate the potency of hydroxychavicol on selected cutaneous human pathogenic fungi by the use of in vitro and in vivo assays and mechanistic characterization along with toxicological effects. Hydroxychavicol consistently displayed a fungicidal effect against all fungal species tested. Inoculum concentrations over the range of 10 4 to 10 7 CFU/ml did not significantly alter its antifungal potential and time–kill curve results revealed concentration–dependent killing. It also inhibited the growth of biofilm generated by Trichophyton mentagrophytes and Candida parapsilosis and reduced the preformed biofilms. Hydroxychavicol was highly effective in the treatment, and mycological eradication of an experimentally induced topical infection model of dermatophytosis (tinea corporis) and cutaneous candidiasis in guinea pigs, respectively. The mode of action of hydroxychavicol appears to originate from the disruption of cell membrane integrity. Administration of hydroxychavicol in mice at 500 mg per kg of body weight by orally produced no overt toxicity. The retention capacity of hydroxychavicol in vitro, in the presence of keratin has attributed to its in vivo effectiveness in the guinea pig model of topical infections. Furthermore, it is suggestive of its potential use as phytochemical for topical use in cutaneous fungal infections.
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