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Liquid-crystalline systems as a potential strategy for vaginal administration of p-coumaric acid on the treatment of vulvovaginal candidiasis: an in vitro and in vivo evaluation

Grant number: 18/22658-1
Support Opportunities:Scholarships abroad - Research Internship - Master's degree
Effective date (Start): February 21, 2019
Effective date (End): August 18, 2019
Field of knowledge:Health Sciences - Pharmacy - Pharmaceutical Technology
Principal Investigator:Marlus Chorilli
Grantee:Paula Scanavez Ferreira
Supervisor: Van Dijck Patrick
Host Institution: Faculdade de Ciências Farmacêuticas (FCFAR). Universidade Estadual Paulista (UNESP). Campus de Araraquara. Araraquara , SP, Brazil
Research place: University of Leuven, Leuven (KU Leuven), Belgium  
Associated to the scholarship:17/22928-6 - Liquid-crystalline systems as a potential strategy for vaginal administration of p-coumaric acid in the treatment of vulvovaginal candidiasis, BP.MS


Vulvovaginal candidiasis (VVC) is considered one of the most common forms of opportunistic fungal infections and Candida albicans is the microorganism with higher frequency in VVC cases, accounting for 80-90% of occurrences. Currently, five classes of antifungal agents are used to treat infections caused by Candida spp. however, they may present serious side effects, such as nephrotoxicity. Furthermore, many species of this pathogenic fungus are also acquiring resistance to treatments. Due to these facts, much attention has been given to molecules from natural sources with a potential antifungal activity that presents minimal or no cytotoxicity, such as p-coumaric acid (p-CA). p-CA is a phenolic acid that occurs naturally in plants, has low toxicity, and presented a considerable bioavailability. In order to avoid systemic side effects, the administration of p-CA through a vaginal route seems more advantageous. For this topical application, liquid crystals (LCs) are a drug delivery system, which presents interesting properties that promote the controlled release of the drug and also improve its solubility and bioavailability. LCs also present mucoadhesive characteristic, which allows a greater time of contact between the formulation and the mucosa. Therefore, this work aims to demonstrate the antifungal activity of p-CA when incorporated into liquid crystalline systems for the treatment of vulvovaginal candidiasis, its fungicidal effect in vitro and in vivo, and also its applicability as a possible antifungal agent, this work intends to evaluate the potential of this system as new and innovative. (AU)

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Scientific publications
(References retrieved automatically from Web of Science and SciELO through information on FAPESP grants and their corresponding numbers as mentioned in the publications by the authors)
FERREIRA, P. S.; VICTORELLI, F. D.; RODERO, C. F.; FORTUNATO, G. C.; ARAUJO, V. H. S.; FONSECA-SANTOS, B.; BAUAB, T. M.; VAN DIJCK, P.; CHORILLI, M.. p-Coumaric acid loaded into liquid crystalline systems as a novel strategy to the treatment of vulvovaginal candidiasis. International Journal of Pharmaceutics, v. 603, . (19/10261-2, 17/22928-6, 17/10016-2, 18/22658-1)

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