Rodrigues, C.F.

PharmD and Researcher

Novel strategies to fight Candida infections: natural honey

Rodrigues ME; Fernandes L; Rodrigues, CF; Oliveira A; Henriques M. 
CEB Annual Meeting, Braga, Portugal, July, 2017
The incidence of Candida infections (Candidosis) has increased remarkably in the last years, being attributed to the rise in the elderly population, the increasing number of immunocompromised patients, and the widespread use of indwelling medical devices. Candida albicans remains as the most prevalent species of these infections, but a clear rise in the proportion of non-Candida albicans Candida (NCAC) species has been noted. These species have an inherent level of resistance to certain antifungal agents higher than C. albicans though their virulence factors are much less understood. A major virulence factor is the ability to adhere and to form biofilms in medical devices and host tissues, because of a higher tolerance to antifungal therapy. Consequently, there is an urgent need to develop new strategies to fight these infections. Natural compounds are attracting increased interest in this field, among which honey. AIM: To evaluate honey as a novel strategy to fight C. tropicalis infections
Novel strategies to fight Candida infections: natural honey.

A first screening of the treatment with four planktonic Candida species culture indicated higher efficiency of honey against C. tropicalis.
Honey is capable of 2-log reductions on C. tropicalis biofilms after 24h of treatment
The combination of honey with nystatin and chlorhexidine reduces the antifungal dosage typically required in clinical settings by 50%, with a total biofilm reduction of 3-log
with nystatin and 5-logs with chlorhexidine.
In mixed biofilms of C. tropicalis and P. aeruginosa, honey at 50% or above reduces yeast and bacterial biofilm by 2-log and 4-log, respectively.
Altogether, our results highlight the great potential of honey as an alternative or complimentary strategy for the control of Candida infections.