World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 24, Issue 8, pp 1445–1450 | Cite as

Effect of some essential oils on mycelial growth of Penicillium digitatum Sacc.

  • Mahdi Yahyazadeh
  • Reza OmidbaigiEmail author
  • Rasoul Zare
  • Hossein Taheri
Original Paper


The antifungal action of four essential oils of Foeniculum vulgare (fennel), Thymus vulgaris (thyme), Eugenia caryophyllata (Clove) and Salvia officinalis (sage) was tested in vitro against Penicillium digitatum Sacc. Direct contact and vapour phase were used to test the antifungal activity of these essential oils against P. digitatum that is responsible for green mould rot of citrus fruits. The vapour phase and direct contact of clove and thyme essential oils exhibited the strongest toxicity and totally inhibited the mycelial growth of the test fungus. Thyme and clove essential oils completely inhibited P. digitatum growth either when added into the medium 600 μl l−1 or by their volatiles with 24 μl per 8 cm diameter Petri dish. In in vitro mycelial growth assay showed fungistatic and fungicidal activity by clove and thyme essential oils. Sage and fennel oils did not show any inhibitory activity on this fungus. Scanning electron microscopy (SEM) was done to study the mode of action of clove oil in P. digitatum and it was observed that treatment with the oil leads to large alterations in hyphal morphology.


Antifungal activity Chemical analysis Essential oils Penicillium digitatum Scanning electron microscopy 



Osmium tetroxide


Potato dextrose agar


Phosphate-buffer saline (pH 7.4)


Essential oil


Gas chromatography


Scanning electron microscopy


Gas chromatography combined with mass spectrometry


Analysis of variance


Least significant difference


Retention indices


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mahdi Yahyazadeh
    • 1
  • Reza Omidbaigi
    • 1
    Email author
  • Rasoul Zare
    • 2
  • Hossein Taheri
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Horticulture, College of AgricultureTarbiat Modares UniversityTehranIran
  2. 2.Department of BotanyIranian Research Institute of Plant ProtectionTehranIran
  3. 3.Citrus Research InstituteRamsarIran

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