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Temperature limitation may explain the containment of the trophozoites in the cornea during Acanthamoeba castellanii keratitis.

TitleTemperature limitation may explain the containment of the trophozoites in the cornea during Acanthamoeba castellanii keratitis.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsNielsen, MKiel, Nielsen, K, Hjortdal, J, Sørensen, UBSkov
JournalParasitol Res
Volume113
Issue12
Pagination4349-53
Date Published2014 Dec
ISSN1432-1955
KeywordsAcanthamoeba castellanii, Acanthamoeba Keratitis, Animals, Cornea, Humans, Temperature, Trophozoites
Abstract

Acanthamoeba keratitis is a serious sight-threatening disease. The relatively low temperature of the cornea may explain why amoebic infections usually are localized in this tissue and rarely spread to other parts of the eye. In this study, the growth rate of the amoeba Acanthamoeba castellanii was examined at different temperatures. The aim was to establish the optimal growth temperature for A. castellanii and to examine the growth within the vicinity of the core body temperature. The growth rates of four clinical and two environmental strains of A. castellanii were estimated at different temperatures, and temperature limitations for the trophozoite stage was established. Movements influenced by temperature gradients were monitored for two clinical strains of A. castellanii. The highest growth rate for each of the six amoebic strains tested was found to be close to 32 °C. The growth of the trophozoites of all examined strains was greatly reduced or completely halted at temperatures above 36 °C and encysted at the elevated temperature. Thus, the optimal growth temperature for the four strains of A. castellanii is close to the surface temperature of the human cornea, while the higher body core-temperature induced encysting of the amoebae. This may explain why most amoebic eye infections are confined to the cornea.

DOI10.1007/s00436-014-4109-0
Alternate JournalParasitol Res
PubMed ID25204727