European Journal of Plant Pathology

, Volume 155, Issue 4, pp 1105–1116 | Cite as

Production and efficacy of neem nanoemulsion in the control of Aspergillus flavus and Penicillium citrinum in soybean seeds

  • Priscila de Castro e Silva
  • Lívio Antônio Silva PereiraEmail author
  • Édila Maria de Rezende
  • Michele Valquíria dos Reis
  • Amanda Maria Teixeira Lago
  • Gabriel Ribeiro Carvalho
  • Renato Paiva
  • Juliano Elvis Oliveira
  • José Manoel Marconcini


The search for alternative methods that are efficient to control phytopathogens is extremely important. For this purpose, the aim of this study is to develop and characterize Neem oil nanoemulsions (Azadirachta indica), as well as evaluate its applicability to fungi Aspergillus flavus and Penicillium citrinum in soybean seeds. Soybean seeds were placed with nanoemulsion containing different Neem oil concentrations (0.5%, 1%, 2%, and 3% w/v) for t1 (600 min) and t2 (30 min). Control samples (positive: infested and untreated; and negative: not infested and treated) were also carried out. Prior to the treatments, the formulated nanoemulsions were characterized by dynamic light dispersion, polydispersity, rheology, and stability test. Subsequently, the soybean seeds were treated with nanoemulsion and then tested for germination and health. The nanoemulsion showed a mean droplet diameter of 59 ± 0.6 nm, and a viscosity of 2.542 ± 0.07 mPa s. The droplet sizes in the nanoemulsion were stable for a period of 20 days and the polydispersity remained around 0.209 ± 0.02. Neem oil had an inhibitory effect on the growth of fungal isolates, being that the highest antifungal activity was observed at the concentration of 3% (w/v) (28 mm inhibition zone for A. flavus and 25 mm for P. citrinum). Neem oil nanoemulsions were efficient against the studied fungi and did not present phytotoxic effects to the seeds. Nanoemulsion is easily accessible, economically viable and, in addition, less toxic than common synthetic pesticides. This study showed that Neem oil nanoemulsions have significant potential applications in agriculture.


Biological control Fungicide Azadirachta indica Azadirachtin 



This study was financed in part by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior – Brasil (CAPES) - Finance Code 001. The authors wish to thank the financial support the CNPq and FAPEMIG, technical support and supply of equipment the Embrapa Instrumentation.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

There are no conflicts of interest on the part of the authors in this work.

Ethics approval and consent to participate

There is no research involving human and / or animal participants.


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Copyright information

© Koninklijke Nederlandse Planteziektenkundige Vereniging 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Postgraduate Program in Biomaterial EngineeringFederal University of LavrasLavrasBrazil
  2. 2.Department of BiologyFederal University of LavrasLavrasBrazil
  3. 3.Department of AgricultureFederal University of LavrasLavrasBrazil
  4. 4.Department of Food ScienceFederal University of LavrasLavrasBrazil
  5. 5.Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation InstrumentationSão CarlosBrazil

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