Some antimalarial drugs are immune-modulators that impact multiple pathways of innate immunity in malarial treatment. However, information on the immunomodulatory effects of artequine and rutin in the treatment of malaria remains elusive. Twenty-five Swiss mice (18 ± 2 g) were used for this study. Twenty were infected with Plasmodium berghei (NK65). Parasitemia was confirmed, and the animals were grouped (n = 5) as follows: Group A was not infected but treated orally with vehicle. Groups B to E were infected and treated (B) orally with vehicle (10 ml/kg), (C) with 10 mg/kg artequine, (D) with 10 mg/kg of artequine supplemented with 100 mg rutin/kg, and (D) with 10 mg/kg of artequine supplemented with 200 mg rutin/kg, for 7 days. Blood was collected for hematological, inflammatory cytokines, and immunoglobulins G and M assays. Post mitochondrial supernatant fraction was used for antioxidant assays. Rutin co-administration (200 mg/kg) significantly (P < 0.001) increased platelet and neutrophil counts (P < 0.01) but significantly (P < 0.01) decreased white blood cell count and lymphocyte relative to parasitized control. Also, it significantly (P < 0.05) decreased lipid peroxidation, xanthine oxidase, and superoxide dismutase activities but significantly (P < 0.05) increased reduced glutathione and glutathione S-transferase activity. Rutin co-administration also caused a significant (P < 0.001) increase in tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-6, and immunoglobulin M levels, while interleukin-1β and immunoglobulin G decreased significantly (P < 0.001) compared with parasitized control. These results showed that rutin co-administration with artequine improved host antioxidant status and modulated the immune and inflammatory responses.

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