In vitro and in vivo activity of Artemisia sieberi against Trichomonas gallinae

Document Type: Full paper (Original article)


1 Department of Veterinary Parasitology, Babol Branch, Islamic Azad University, Babol, Iran

2 Department of Veterinary Pharmacology, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Amol University of Special Modern Technologies, Amol, Iran

3 Department of Pharmacology, School of Medicine, Babol University of Medical Sciences, Babol, Iran


In Iranian folk medicine Artemisia sieberi has been used for treatment of parasite infections in human and animals. The present study was designed to evaluate the in vitro and in vivo effects of A. sieberi essential oil (EO) against Trichomonas gallinae. Trichomonas gallinae were recovered by wet mount method from infected native pigeons. The in vitro assays were accomplished in multi-well plates containing metronidazole (MTZ) as a standard antitrichomonal and EO in final concentrations of 2.5, 5, 10, 20, 50, and 100 μg/ml of culture medium containing 104 parasites. The in vivo assay was performed on 40 experimentally infected pigeons receiving 25 and 50 mg/kg of MTZ and EO for 7 successive days. Gas chromatographic (GC) analysis was performed to reveal chemical constituents of the EO. At 20 µg/ml, MTZ resulted in no viable trophozoite in culture medium after 24 h incubation period. While the 24 h MIC of EO was 10 µg/ml. Treatment with EO at dose of 50 mg/kg after 4 days led to full recovery of infected pigeons but for MTZ at the same dose 5 days were spent. Major constituents of EO were α-thujone (31.5%) and β-thujone (11.92%). Data of the present study introduced A. sieberi as a natural potent antitrichomonal agent effective against T. gallinae.


Adebajo, AC; Ayoola, OF; Iwalewa, EO; Akindahunsi, AA; Omisore, NO; Adewunmi, CO and Adenowo, TK (2006). Anti-trichomonal, biochemical and toxicological activities of methanolic extract and some carbazole alkaloids isolated from the leaves of Murraya koenigii growing in Nigeria. Phytomedicine. 13: 246-254.

Adebajo, AC; Iwalewa, EO; Obuotor, EM; Ibikunle, GF; Omisore, NO; Adewunmi, CO and Verspohl, EJ (2009). Pharmacological properties of the extract and some isolated compounds of Clausena lansium stem bark: anti-trichomonal, antidiabetic, anti-inflammatory, hepato-protective and antioxidant effects. J. Ethnopharmacol., 122: 10-19.

Arab, HA; Rahbari, S; Rassouli, A; Moslemi, MH and Khosravirad, F (2006). Determination of artemisinin in Artemisia sieberi and anticoccidial effects of the plant extract in broiler chickens. Trop. Anim. Health Prod., 38: 497-503.

Boal, CW; Mannan, RW and Hudelson, KS (1998). Trichomoniasis in Cooper’s hawks from Arizona. J. Wildlife Dis., 34: 590-593.

Feng, XP; Hayashi, J; Beech, RN and Prichard, RK (2002). Study of the nematode putative GABA type-A receptor subunits: evidence for modulation by ivermectin. J. Neurochem., 83: 870-878.

Gerhold, RW; Yabsley, MJ; Smith, AJ; Ostergaard, E; Mannan, W; Cann, JD and Fischer, JR (2008). Molecular characterization of the Trichomonas gallinae morphologic complex in the United States. J. Parasitol., 94: 1335-1341.

Hold, KM; Sirisoma, NS; Ikeda, T; Narahashi, T and Casida, JE (2000). Alpha-thujone (the active component of absinthe): gamma-aminobutyric acid type A receptor modulation and metabolic detoxification. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA., 97: 3826-3831.

Khosravi, A; Shirani, D and Mahmoudi, M (2003). Evaluation of the use of Artemisia sieberi essence on the treatment of cats and dogs with dermatophytosis. J. Vet. Res., 58: 293-295.

Lawson, B; Cunningham, AA; Chantrey, J; Hughes, LA; John, SK; Bunbury, N and Tyler, KM (2011). A clonal strain of Trichomonas gallinae is the aetiologic agent of an emerging avian epidemic disease. Infect. Genet. Evol., 11: 1638-1645.

Lee, S; Tsao, R; Peterson, C and Coats, JR (1997). Insecticidal activity of monoterpenoids to western corn rootworm (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae), twospotted spider mite (Acari: Tetranychidae), and house fly (Diptera: Muscidae). J. Econ. Entomol., 90: 883-892.

Lumeij, JT and Zwijnenberg, RJ (1990). Failure of nitro-imidazole drugs to control trichomoniasis in the racing pigeon (Columba livia domestica). Avian. Pathol., 19: 165-166.

Mahboubi, M and Farzin, N (2009). Antimicrobial activity of Artemisia sieberi essential oil from central Iran. Iranian J. Microbiol., 1: 43-48.

Munoz, E; Castella, J and Gutierrez, JF (1998). In vivo and in vitro sensitivity of Trichomonas gallinae to some nitroimidazole drugs. Vet. Parasitol., 78: 239-246.

Nahrevanian, H; Sheykhkanlooye, B; Kazemi, M; Hajhosseini, R; Soleymani, M and Nahrevanian, S (2012). Antimalarial effects of Iranian flora Artemisia sieberi on Plasmodium berghei in vivo in mice and phytochemistry analysis of its herbal extracts. Malaria Res. Treat., doi: 10.1155/2012/727032.

Negahban, M; Moharramipour, S and Sefidkon, F (2007). Fumigant toxicity of essential oil from Artemisia sieberi Besser against three stored-product insects. J. Stored Prod. Res., 43: 123-128.

Robinson, RA; Lawson, B; Toms, MP; Peck, KM; Kirkwood, JK; Chantrey, J and Cunningham, AA (2010). Emerging infectious disease leads to rapid population declines of common British birds. PLoS One. 5: e12215. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0012215.

Rouffaer, LO; Adriaensen, C; De Boeck, C; Claerebout, E and Martel, A (2014). Racing pigeons: a reservoir for nitro-imidazole-resistant Trichomonas gallinae. J. Parasitol., 100: 360-363.

Sansano-Maestre, J; Garijo-Toledo, MM and Gómez-Muñoz, MT (2009). Prevalence and genotyping of Trichomonas gallinae in pigeons and birds of prey. Avian Pathol., 38: 201-207.

Seddiek, A; El-Shorbagy, MM; Khater, HF and Ali, AM (2014). The antitrichomonal efficacy of garlic and metronidazole against Trichomonas gallinae infecting domestic pigeons. Parasitol. Res., 113: 1319-1329.

Stockdale, JE; Dunn, JC; Goodman, SJ; Morris, AJ; Sheehan, DK; Grice, PV and Hamer, KC (2015). The protozoan parasite Trichomonas gallinae causes adult and nestling mortality in a declining population of European Turtle Doves, Streptopelia turtur. Parasitology. 142: 490-498.