Bacillus thuringiensis Cry5B is Active against Strongyloides stercoralis in vitro

UMMS Affiliation

Program in Molecular Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Immunology and Infectious Disease | Parasitic Diseases | Tropical Medicine


Strongyloidiasis, caused by Strongyloides stercoralis infection, is an important neglected tropical disease that causes significant public health problems in the tropics and subtropics. The disease can persist in hosts for decades and may be life-threatening because of hyperinfection and dissemination. Ivermectin (mostly) and albendazole are the most common anthelmintics used for treatment. Albendazole is suboptimal for this parasite, and although ivermectin is quite effective in immunocompromised patients, a multiple-course regimen is required. Furthermore, reliance on a single drug class for treating intestinal nematodes is a recipe for future failure. Therefore, it is important to discover new anthelmintics to treat or prevent human strongyloidiasis. One promising candidate is the Bacillus thuringiensis crystal protein Cry5B. Cry5B is highly potent against parasitic nematodes, for example, hookworms and Ascaris suum. Here, we investigated the potential of Cry5B against S. stercoralis. Multiple stages of S. stercoralis, including the first larval stage (L1s), infective stage (iL3s), free-living adult stage, and parasitic female stage, were all susceptible to Cry5B as indicated by impairment of motility and decreased viability in vitro. In summary, Cry5B demonstrated strong potential as an effective anthelmintic for treatment and transmission control of human strongyloidiasis, justifying further experiments to investigate in vivo therapeutic efficacy.

DOI of Published Version



Charuchaibovorn S, Sanprasert V, Sutthanont N, Hu Y, Abraham A, Ostroff GR, Aroian RV, Jaleta TG, Lok JB, Nuchprayoon S. Bacillus thuringiensis Cry5B is Active against Strongyloides stercoralis in vitro. Am J Trop Med Hyg. 2019 Nov;101(5):1177-1182. doi: 10.4269/ajtmh.19-0083. PMID: 31516117; PMCID: PMC6838580. Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene

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