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Sensitization of Candida albicans to terbinafine by berberine and berberrubine

Pikling Lam, Stanton Hon Lung Kok, Kenneth Ka Ho Lee, Kim Hung Lam, Desmond Kwok Po Hau, Wai Yeung Wong, Zhaoxiang Bian, Roberto Gambari, Chung Hin Chui
Biomedical Reports 2016, 4 (4): 449-452
27073630
Candida albicans (C. albicans) is an opportunistic fungal pathogen, particularly observed in immunocompromised patients. C. albicans accounts for 50-70% of cases of invasive candidiasis in the majority of clinical settings. Terbinafine, an allylamine antifungal drug, has been used to treat fungal infections previously. It has fungistatic activity against C. albicans. Traditional Chinese medicines can be used as complementary medicines to conventional drugs to treat a variety of ailments and diseases. Berberine is a quaternary alkaloid isolated from the traditional Chinese herb, Coptidis Rhizoma, while berberrubine is isolated from the medicinal plant Berberis vulgaris, but is also readily derived from berberine by pyrolysis. The present study demonstrates the possible complementary use of berberine and berberrubine with terbinafine against C. albicans. The experimental findings assume that the potential application of these alkaloids together with reduced dosage of the standard drug would enhance the resulting antifungal potency.

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