Yeast morphology investigations based on manualWSI scans presented in new scientific study

Cow mastitis is a huge issue in the dairy industry, aggravated by a decreasing efficacy of traditional antibiotic treatments due to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant pathogens. Therefore, alternative treatment options are increasingly being investigated regarding their potential efficacy and safety. In this regard, metal-based compounds have received some attention.

Therefore, an interdisciplinary group of researchers from Serbia and Slovenia studied the effects of different newly synthesized silver(I) complexes regarding their antimicrobial activity against pathogens typically associated with cow mastitis.

First author Tina P. Andrejević and her collaborators first synthesized various new silver(I) complexes with pyridine ligands and performed exhaustive structural characterizations of the new compounds. Subsequently, the activity against several pathogens was investigated and compared in numerous experiments.

In one of these experiments, the effects of the two most promising silver(I) complexes on the filamentation of Candida albicans were assessed. C. albicans is a yeast that is known to be able to cause mastitis. Under certain circumstances, C. albicans grows in the form of filamentous cells, so-called hyphal cells (see image below); the formation of hyphae in turn gives C. albicans pathogenic properties. Therefore, antimicrobial compounds such as sliver(I)-complexes are expected to reduce or even suppress the filamentation of C. albicans.

Candida albicans filamentation (light microscopy, 20X magnification)

The researchers acquired whole slide images of C. albicans exposed to both silver(I) complexes and of a non-treated control using the Microvisioneer mWSI scanning software and measured the length of a representative number of hyphae. And indeed, they detected a remarkable effect of both silver complexes as the number and length of the hyphae clearly decreased, confirming anti-microbial effects of the silver(I)-complexes that were observed in other experiments in the study. In addition, morphological effects regarding the shape of the C. albicans cells were observed by the authors for one of the two tested sliver complexes. This approach highlights one crucial advantage of the acquisition of whole slide images compared to only separate single images, as it allows an easy and comprehensible assessment of a large representative sample size, in the presented study a representative number of C. albicans cells and their hyphae.

Overall, the authors presented new promising and much needed treatment options for cow mastitis, with their efficacy having been evaluated, among others, based on the Microvisooneer manualWSI scanning technology.


Tina P. Andrejević, Dusan Milivojevic, Biljana Đ. Glišić, Jakob Kljun, Nevena Lj. Stevanović, Sandra Vojnovic, Strahinja Medic, Jasmina Nikodinovic-Runic, Iztok Turel, Miloš I. Djuran:

Silver(I) complexes with different pyridine-4,5-dicarboxylate ligands as efficient agents for the control of cow mastitis associated pathogens, Dalton Transactions, 2020

DOI: 10.1039/d0dt00518e

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