The aim of this study was (i) to assess the antimicrobial effects of contact lens disinfecting solutions marketed in Malaysia against common bacterial eye pathogens and as well as eye parasite, Acanthamoeba castellanii, and (ii) to determine whether targeting cyst wall would improve the efficacy of contact lens disinfectants. Using ISO 14729 Stand-Alone Test for disinfecting solutions, bactericidal and amoebicidal assays of six different contact lens solutions including Oxysept®, AO SEPT PLUS, OPTI-FREE® pure moist®, Renu® fresh™, FreshKon® CLEAR and COMPLETE RevitaLens™ were performed using Manufacturers Minimum recommended disinfection time (MRDT). The efficacy of contact lens solutions was determined against keratitis-causing microbes, namely: Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes, Streptococcus pneumoniae, and Acanthamoeba castellanii. In addition, using chlorhexidine as an antiamoebic compound and cellulase enzyme to disrupt cyst wall structure, we determined whether combination of both agents can enhance efficacy of marketed contact lens disinfectants against A. castellanii trophozoites and cysts, in vitro. The results revealed that all contact lens disinfectants tested showed potent bactericidal effects exhibiting 100% kill against all bacterial species tested. In contrast, none of the contact lens disinfectants had potent effects against Acanthamoeba cysts viability. When tested against trophozoites, two disinfectants, Oxysept Multipurpose and AO-sept Multipurpose showed partial amoebicidal effects. Using chlorhexidine as an antiamoebic compound and cellulase enzyme to disrupt cyst wall structure, the findings revealed that combination of both agents in contact lens disinfectants abolished viability of A. castellanii cysts and trophozoites. Given the inefficacy of contact lens disinfectants tested in this study, these findings present a significant concern to public health. These findings revealed that targeting cyst wall by using cyst wall degrading molecules in contact lens disinfecting solutions will enhance their efficacy against this devastating eye infection.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.