Evaluation of protective efficacy of Spirulina platensis in Balb/C mice with candidiasis

J Mycol Med. 2012 Dec;22(4):329-34. doi: 10.1016/j.mycmed.2012.10.001. Epub 2012 Nov 16.


Objective: This study was aimed at evaluating the immunostimulatory effect of Spirulina platensis in prophylaxis of Balb/C mice with systemic candidiasis.

Materials and methods: In first experiment, 40 mice were divided into four groups, ten mice per each group, for cytokines assay. Animals received a dose of 800mg/kg of S. platensis for 4days and then were intravenously inoculated with 1×10(6) Candida albicans. Control groups received 0.2mL and 0.1mL normal saline for prophylaxis and inoculation, respectively. Five mice from each group were euthanized after 24hours and 72hours and the serum levels of IFN-γ and TNF-α were measured by Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) method. In second experiment, two mice groups with systemic candidiasis, 11 mice per each group, were included to evaluate the survival rate. Animals were monitored for 30days and the kidneys, liver, lungs and spleen were analyzed for fungal invasion.

Results: The results indicated that the Spirulina-treated mice produced more IFN-g and TNF-α level than their control groups. This infected group showed that the mean survival time (28.86±2.7) was significantly (P<0.05) higher than control group (13.9±3.34). They also exhibited that fungal clearance in selected organs at death time represents significant differences between spleen and liver (P<0.05).

Conclusion: Prophylaxis with S. platensis had synergistic effect through producing cytokines such as TNF-α and IFN-γ. Our results provide important information for the potential application of S. platensis in the treatment and resistance of Balb/C mice with systemic candidiasis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adjuvants, Immunologic / therapeutic use*
  • Animals
  • Candida albicans / isolation & purification
  • Candidemia / blood
  • Candidemia / drug therapy
  • Candidemia / prevention & control*
  • Dietary Supplements*
  • Drug Evaluation, Preclinical
  • Interferon-gamma / blood
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Spirulina*
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / blood
  • Viscera / microbiology


  • Adjuvants, Immunologic
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Interferon-gamma