, Volume 225, Issue 1, pp 57–65

Chemical characterization and antifungal activity of essential oil of capitula from wild Indian Tagetes patula L.


  • C. Romagnoli
    • Dipartimento del Museo di Paleobiologia e dell’Orto Botanico, Università di Modena e Reggio Emilia
  • R. Bruni
    • Sezione Biologia Vegetale e Orto Botanico, Dipartimento di Biologia Evolutiva e Funzionale, Università di Parma
  • E. Andreotti
    • Dipartimento delle Risorse Naturali e Culturali, Università di Ferrara
  • M. K. Rai
    • Department of BiotechnologyAmravati University
  • C. B. Vicentini
    • Dipartimento di Scienze Farmaceutiche, Università di Ferrara
  • D. Mares
    • Dipartimento delle Risorse Naturali e Culturali, Università di Ferrara

DOI: 10.1007/s00709-005-0084-8

Cite this article as:
Romagnoli, C., Bruni, R., Andreotti, E. et al. Protoplasma (2005) 225: 57. doi:10.1007/s00709-005-0084-8


The essential oil extracted by steam distillation from the capitula of Indian Tagetes patula, Asteraceae, was evaluated for its antifungal properties and analyzed by gas chromatography and gas chromatography–mass spectrometry. Thirty compounds were identified, representing 89.1% of the total detected. The main components were piperitone (24.74%), piperitenone (22.93%), terpinolene (7.8%), dihydro tagetone (4.91%), cis-tagetone (4.62%), limonene (4.52%), and allo-ocimene (3.66%). The oil exerted a good antifungal activity against two phytopathogenic fungi, Botrytis cinerea and Penicillium digitatum, providing complete growth inhibition at 10 µl/ml and 1.25 µl/ml, respectively. The contribution of the two main compounds, piperitone and piperitenone, to the antifungal efficacy was also evaluated and ultrastructural modifications in mycelia were observed via electron microscopy, evidencing large alterations in hyphal morphology and a multisite mechanism of action.

Key words: Tagetes patula; Chemical analysis; Antifungal activity; Transmission electron microscopy; Scanning electron microscopy.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 2005