Silver Nanoparticles Conjugated with Contact Lens Solutions May Reduce the Risk of Acanthamoeba Keratitis

Edyta B. Hendiger, Marcin Padzik, Inés Sifaoui, María Reyes-Batlle, Atteneri López-Arencibia, Diana Zyskowska, Marta Grodzik, Anna Pietruczuk-Padzik, Jacek Hendiger, Gabriela Olędzka, Lidia Chomicz, José E. Piñero, Jacob Lorenzo-Morales

Acanthamoeba keratitis (AK), a severe sight-threatening corneal infection, has become a significant medical problem, especially among contact lens wearers. The disease manifests as eye pain, congestion, blurred vision, lachrymation, and ring-shaped infiltrates of the cornea, and can lead to permanent blindness. Inappropriate habits of contact lens users may result in an increased risk of AK infection. The anti-amoebic efficiency of popular multipurpose contact lens solutions is insufficient to reduce this risk. An effective and non-toxic therapy against AK has not yet been developed. The prevention of AK is crucial to reduce the number of AK infections. Nanoparticles are known to be active agents against bacteria, viruses, and fungi and were also recently tested against protozoa, including Acanthamoeba spp. In our previous studies, we proved the anti-amoebic and anti-adhesive activity of silver nanoparticles against Acanthamoeba castellanii. The aim of this study is to evaluate the activity, cytotoxicity, and anti-adhesive properties of silver nanoparticles conjugated with five commonly used multipurpose contact lens solutions against the Acanthamoeba castellanii NEFF strain. The obtained results show a significant increase in anti-amoebic activity, without increasing the overall cytotoxicity, of Solo Care Aqua and Opti Free conjugated with nanoparticles. The adhesion of Acanthamoeba trophozoites to the contact lens surface is also significantly reduced. We conclude that low concentrations of silver nanoparticles can be used as an ingredient in contact lens solutions to decrease the risk of Acanthamoeba keratitis infection.

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