There is a rising global trend in candida strains with high resistance to fluconazole and other antifungal drugs, hence the need for novel agents. Here, we investigated the anti-Candida activity of Q-Griffithsin (Q-GRFT), a lectin naturally produced by the red-sea algae, spp.


To assess in vitro growth inhibitory activity, was incubated with Q-GRFT on agar plates and in broth media. We investigated GFP-bound Q-GRFT’s ability to adhere to using fluorescence microscopy and fluorescence intensity assessments. To demonstrate in vivogrowth inhibitory activity, CBA/J mice were treated per vaginam with Q-GRFT followed by challenge with , and fungal burden determined following vaginal lavage.


Wild type fluorescently labeled Q-GRFT displayed higher fluorescence than the lectin-binding site deficient variant following incubation with . Q-GRFT localized around the fungal cells and bound to α-mannan in the cell wall. Q-GRFT significantly inhibited growth in broth and on agar plates, disrupted the integrity of the cell wall, and induced ROS formation. The lectin significantly inhibited the growth of , and , with modest activity against C CDC388 and CDC389 strains in vitro. Topical treatment resulted in a lower fungal burden compared to the vehicle control group in vaginal candidiasis.


Q-GRFT binds to and inhibits growth both in vitro and in vivo. Further studies are needed to establish the mechanism of growth inhibition.

  • This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License.

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