An unexpected activity of β-cyclodextrin, an excipient used in pharmaceutical technology, was observed against Cryptosporidium parvum. The viability and infectivity of purified oocysts, exposed for 24 hr to β-cyclodextrin (2.5% suspension), were evaluated by inclusion/exclusion of 2 fluorogenic vital dyes and a suckling murine model, respectively. Results of the viability assay showed a high proportion of nonviable oocysts (81.5%). The intensity of experimental infection, determined 7 days postinoculation by examination of intestinal homogenates, was significantly lower (P < 0.05) than in the control litters. The preventive and curative efficacies of β-cyclodextrin suspension were also evaluated in experimentally infected neonatal mice. Infection was prevented when the suspension was administered 2 hr before inoculated oocysts and on days 1 and 2 postinoculation.
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