Document Type : Research Paper
Department of Biotechnology, Iranian Research Organization for Science and Technology (IROST), Tehran, Iran 2. Molecular Parasitology Laboratory, Department of Parasitology, Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran
Molecular Parasitology Laboratory, Department of Parasitology, Pasteur Institute of Iran, Tehran, Iran
Department of Biotechnology, Iranian Research Organization for Science and Technology (IROST), Tehran, Iran
Toxoplasma gondii (T. gondii) infection rises the risk of emerging psycho-behavioral disorders, including schizophrenia and epilepsy. The widespread outbreak of T. gondii and its relation with psychiatric diseases raises the possibility of applying antipsychotic medications to control this parasite or parasite-based drugs to reduce neurological complications. According to reports, haloperidol prevented T. gondii tachyzoites from multiplying in culture. Animals receiving the medication did not, however, survive longer or develop fewer cysts during acute and chronic phase, respectively. In this study, the parasite’s repetitive DNA fragment REP529, the bradyzoite-specific protein BAG1, and the tachyzoite-specific protein SAG1 were quantified in mice brains treated with haloperidol by quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) technique. Similar to the typical anti-toxoplasmosis drug, Trimethoprim/Sulfamethoxazole (TMP/SMZ), the therapy with haloperidol suppressed the Toxoplasma and lowered all the BAG1, SAG1, and REP529 copy counts in mouse brains (P < 0.0001). In addition, haloperidol reduced brain TNF expression similarly to TMP/SMZ (P < 0.0001). Mice brain histology revealed a substantial decrease in lymphocyte perivascular infiltration, glial nodules, and cyst formation the same as the TMP/SMZ group. Our findings offer concrete proof of the effectiveness of the mood-stabilizing and antipsychotic medication haloperidol in treating persistent Toxoplasma infection. These findings may be used to modify treatment plans for psychotic patients and create new potent anti-Toxoplasma medications.