The antifungal agents clotrimazole (CLT) and ketoconazole (KC) and the herbicide clodinafop-propargyl (CP) inhibit growth of Plasmodium sp., Toxoplasma sp., and Trypanosoma sp. In the present study, we evaluated these drugs against the in vitro growth of the equine protozoan parasites Babesia equi and B. caballi. Clotrimazole (IC50: 2 and 17 μM), KC (IC50: 6 and 22 μM), and CP (IC50: 450 and 354 μM) were effective growth inhibitors. Interestingly, intraerythrocytic KC-treated Babesia sp. were observed to be in immediate contact with the plasma fraction of the blood in electron microscopy. These results demonstrate the babesiacidial activities of these compounds and suggest their chemotherapeutic potential for the treatment of equine babesioses.
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