In vitro and ex vivo evaluation of the anti-Giardia duodenalis activity of the supernatant of Slab51 (SivoMixx)

Stefania Perrucci, Gianluca Fichi, Enrica Ricci, Livio Galosi, Marco Lalle, Giacomo Rossi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The effects on Giardia duodenalis of Slab51 probiotic supernatants were evaluated in vitro and ex vivo. In vitro, Slab51 (10 1 UFC) was cultured and the obtained supernatant was filtered, adjusted at pH 7, and added (100μl/ml) as such (Slab51 FS) or after heat-treatment, to G. duodenalis cultures to evaluate its effects on G. duodenalis trophozoites growth and adherence. For comparison, negative and metronidazole (20μg/ml) treated controls were used. The morphological and ultrastructural alterations of G. duodenals trophozoites following treatment with Slab51 FS supernatant were investigated by transmission electron microscopy. Ex vivo, mice duodenal portions were cultivated in standard conditions with 5x10 5 G. duodenalis trophozoites/ml, while to further five duodenal portions similarly cultured and infected, Slab51 FS 200μl was added. After 12 and 18h, samples were fixed in 10% buffered formalin and histologically processed to score Giardia infection and cell damage. Cell proliferation/apoptosis was scored by Ki67, TUNEL and Caspase–3 tests. All experiments were conducted in triplicate throughout the study. All data were statistically evaluated (P< 0.05). Results showed that Slab51 FS significantly reduced Giardia growth and adherence respect to negative controls, but its efficacy was overall lower than that of metronidazole. Moreover, the effects of Slab51 FS were significantly lowered by heat-treatment and this reduction was statistically higher at 90C than at 56C, indicating a heat-sensitive nature of active Slab51 FS compounds. At the ultrastructural level, Slab51 FS treated Giardia trophozoites were swelling, increased in size and showed alterations of their cellular membrane and vacuole patterns, loss of the nuclear envelope and nuclear architecture. In ex vivo trials, viable G. duodenalis trophozoites and enterocyte TUNEL+ and Caspase-3 expression were significantly reduced in intestinal sections added with Slab51 FS, while enterocyte Ki67 expression was significantly increased, confirming the anti-G. duodenalis activity of Slab51 FS observed in vitro. In conclusion, results from this study showed that the fresh culture supernatant of the commercial probiotic Slab51 has anti-G. duodenalis properties both in vitro and ex vivo in a mouse model.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0213385
JournalPLoS One
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019


  • Probiotics
  • Giardia
  • in vitro techniques

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General


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