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Antileishmanial Activity of Azitahromycin Against Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis, Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis, and Leishmania (Leishmania) chagasi

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  • 1 Laboratory of Clinical Research, Instituto René Rachou, Fundação Oswaldo Cruz-Fiocruz, CEP 30.190-002 Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil

Azithromycin, an azalide antibiotic, is highly concentrated within different phagocytic cells, especially macrophages. The potential antileishmanial activity of azithromycin against three species of Leishmania from the New World was assessed using in vitro models. Azithromycin decreased viability of promastigote cultures of Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis, Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis, and Leishmania (Leishmania) chagasi as determined by the colorimetric Alamar blue assay. In amastigote intracellular cultures, a significant decrease in infected macrophages counts was observed for all three species with IC50 of 20.83 (27 μ mol/L), 2.18 (2.7 μmol/L), and 6.12 (7.8 μmol/L) μg/mL, respectively. Azithromycin showed in vitro activity against L. (L.) amazonensis, L. (V.) braziliensis, and L. (L.) chagasi and may offer an alternative to current leishmaniasis treatment.

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