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Iron effect on in vitro growht of Pythium insidiosum

Grant number: 13/13764-9
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): September 01, 2013
Effective date (End): August 31, 2015
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Veterinary Medicine - Preventive Veterinary Medicine
Principal researcher:Sandra de Moraes Gimenes Bosco
Grantee:Natália Rodrigues Paschoal
Home Institution: Instituto de Biociências (IBB). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Botucatu. Botucatu , SP, Brazil


Pythiosis is a life-threatening emerging disease which occurs frequently in countries with tropical and subtropical climates. It affects animals, such as cats, dogs, cattle, sheep, equines and man. The disease is characterized by granulomatous lesions in cutaneous/subcutaneous tissues, ocular and vascular lesions are also observed. The etiological agent is Pythium insidiosum.It has been observed a significant association between thalassemia and the most severe form of the disease, which is the vascular involvement. The mechanisms of how thalassemia predispose to infection is unknown. Patients with thalassemia have an overload of iron due to an inefficient erythropoiesis, which leads to increase the intestinal absorption of iron.The overload of iron also affects the susceptibility to infections due to the increased availability of iron to the microorganisms and by the toxic effect that this metal plays in the functioning of immune cells.As has been already demonstrated experimantaly, high levels of iron can influence in the pathogenicity of Yersinia enterocolítica, Listeria monocytogenes and Salmonella spp. Concerning to fungal infections, high levels of iron increase pathogenicity of Rhizopus oryzae, one of the main etiological agent of mucormycosis.In vitro studies about iron influence on P. insidiosum are scarce and the present study aims to evaluate the effect of iron on the in vitro growth of different isolates of P. insidiosum.