Nitazoxanide induces in vitro metabolic acidosis in Taenia crassiceps cysticerci

Exp Parasitol. 2016 Dec;171:17-22. doi: 10.1016/j.exppara.2016.10.012. Epub 2016 Oct 14.


Nitazoxanide (NTZ) is a broad-spectrum anti-parasitic drug used against a wide variety of protozoans and helminthes. Albendazole, its active metabolite albendazole sulfoxide (ABZSO), is one of the drugs of choice to treat both intestinal and tissue helminth and protozoan infections. However little is known regarding their impact on the metabolism of parasites. The aim of this study was to compare the in vitro effect of NTZ and ABZSO in the glycolysis of Taenia crassiceps cysticerci. The cysticerci were treated with 1.2; 0.6; 0.3 or 0.15 μg/mL of NTZ or ABZSO. Chromatographic and spectrophotometric analyses were performed in the culture medium and in the cysticerci extract. Regarding the glucose concentrations was possible to observe two responses: impair of the uptake and gluconeogenesis. The pyruvate concentrations were increased in the ABZSO treated group. Lactate concentrations were increased in the culture medium of NTZ treated groups. Therefore it was possible to infer that the metabolic acidosis was greater in the group treated with NTZ than in the ABZSO treated group indicating that this is one of the modes of action used by this drug to induce the parasite death.

Keywords: Albendazole sulfoxide; Anaerobic metabolism; Lactic acid; Nitazoxanide; Taenia crassiceps.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Albendazole / analogs & derivatives*
  • Albendazole / pharmacology
  • Animals
  • Anticestodal Agents / pharmacology
  • Antiparasitic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Female
  • Glucose / metabolism
  • Glycolysis / drug effects
  • Lactic Acid / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Nitro Compounds
  • Pyruvic Acid / metabolism
  • Taenia / drug effects*
  • Taenia / growth & development
  • Taenia / metabolism
  • Thiazoles / pharmacology*


  • Anticestodal Agents
  • Antiparasitic Agents
  • Nitro Compounds
  • Thiazoles
  • Lactic Acid
  • Pyruvic Acid
  • Albendazole
  • Glucose
  • albendazole sulfoxide
  • nitazoxanide