Binding And Neutralization Of C. Difficile Toxins A And B By Purified Clinoptilolite-Tuff

PLOS ONE(2021)

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Clostridioides difficile (C. difficile) infection is a major public health problem worldwide. The current treatment of C. difficile-associated diarrhea relies on the use of antibacterial agents. However, recurrences are frequent. The main virulence factors of C. difficile are two secreted cytotoxic proteins toxin A and toxin B. Alternative research exploring toxin binding by resins found a reduced rate of recurrence by administration of tolevamer. Hence, binding of exotoxins may be useful in preventing a relapse provided that the adsorbent is innocuous. Here, we examined the toxin binding capacity of G-PUR (R), a purified version of natural clinoptilolite-tuff. Our observations showed that the purified clinoptilolite-tuff adsorbed clinically relevant amounts of C. difficile toxins A and B in vitro and neutralized their action in a Caco-2 intestinal model. This conclusion is based on four independent sets of findings: G-PUR (R) abrogated toxin-induced (i) RAC1 glucosylation, (ii) redistribution of occludin, (iii) rarefaction of the brush border as visualized by scanning electron microscopy and (iv) breakdown of the epithelial barrier recorded by transepithelial electrical resistance monitoring. Finally, we confirmed that the epithelial monolayer tolerated G-PUR (R) over a wide range of particle densities. Our findings justify the further exploration of purified clinoptilolite-tuff as a safe agent in the treatment and/or prevention of C. difficile-associated diarrhea.
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