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Revista Brasileira de Farmacognosia

Print version ISSN 0102-695X


FERREIRA, Felipe S. et al. Potentiation of aminoglycoside antibiotic activity using the body fat from the snake Boa constrictor. Rev. bras. farmacogn. [online]. 2011, vol.21, n.3, pp.503-509.  Epub May 20, 2011. ISSN 0102-695X.

Boa constrictor is widely used in traditional communities in many different folk remedies and products derived from it are sold in public markets throughout northeastern Brazil and as its body fat has many different therapeutic indications as a folk remedy. The present work evaluates the antibacterial activity of the body fat from the snake Boa constrictor when employed either alone or in combination with antibiotics and discusses the ecological implications of the use of this traditional remedy. Oil (OBC) was extracted from body fat located in the ventral region of B. constrictor using hexane as a solvent. The antibacterial activity of OBC was tested against standard as well as multi-resistant lines, either alone and in combination with antibiotics. OBC did not demonstrate any relevant antibacterial activity against standard or multidrug-resistant bacterial strains. OBC showed synergistic activity when combined with the aminoglycoside antibiotics. Our results indicate that the body fat of Boa constrictor does not possess bactericidal activity, from the clinical point of view, but when combined with an antibiotic, the fat demonstrated a significant synergistic activity.

Keywords : antibacterial activity; Boa constrictor; snake; synergistic activity; traditional medicine; zootherapy.

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