Validation of novel fluorescence assays for the routine screening of drug susceptibilities of Trichomonas vaginalis

Natto, M.J., Savioli, F., Quashie, N.B., Dardonville, C., Rodenko, B. and De Koning, H.P. (2012) Validation of novel fluorescence assays for the routine screening of drug susceptibilities of Trichomonas vaginalis. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, 67(4), pp. 933-943. (doi:10.1093/jac/dkr572)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jac/dkr572

Abstract

Objectives: To evaluate existing protocols, based on Alamar blue (resazurin), for the routine determination of drug susceptibility in trichomonads, develop new ones and validate these by screening small antiprotozoal libraries. Methods: The resazurin-based assay was evaluated by determining fluorescence development in Trichomonas media with various cell densities after various intervals and in the presence of metronidazole. Similar investigations were performed with the alternative fluorophores propidium iodide (PI) and resorufin. The optimized protocols were used to screen for new antitrichomonal compounds. Results: Anaerobic cultures of Trichomonas vaginalis rapidly reduced blue resazurin to red, fluorescent resorufin. However, the ascorbic acid in the culture medium produced similar effects, even in the absence of cells, causing high background fluorescence and variability. Moreover, T. vaginalis rapidly metabolized resorufin to the non-fluorescent and colourless metabolite dihydroresorufin, making the fluorescent signal transient. In contrast, resorufin proved to be an excellent viability probe for Trichomonas due to its chemical stability in media and rapid metabolism by the parasite. We also show that staining with PI after cell permeabilization similarly constitutes a reliable measurement of trophozoite numbers. Using the PI and resorufin assays we determined reproducible EC50 values and identified potent antitrichomonal compounds from a limited screen of phosphodiesterase inhibitors and phosphonium salts. Conclusions: The resorufin- and PI-based assays are suitable for routine and high-throughput drug screening, whereas resazurin-based assays are not. These assays constitute a major advance in the current protocols as demonstrated by a successful screen for new antitrichomonal lead compounds.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Rodenko, Dr Boris and De Koning, Professor Harry
Authors: Natto, M.J., Savioli, F., Quashie, N.B., Dardonville, C., Rodenko, B., and De Koning, H.P.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy
Journal Abbr.:J. Antimicrob. Chemother.
ISSN:0305-7453
ISSN (Online):1460-2091
Published Online:17 January 2012

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