Indian Journal of Microbiology

, Volume 58, Issue 4, pp 496–506 | Cite as

Terminalia chebula Retz. Fruit Extracts Inhibit Bacterial Triggers of Some Autoimmune Diseases and Potentiate the Activity of Tetracycline

  • Aaron Mandeville
  • Ian Edwin Cock
Original Research Article


Terminalia chebula Retz. is a northern Indian plant species known for its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties. T. chebula fruit powder was extracted with solvents of varying polarity and screened for bacterial growth inhibition by disc diffusion assay. The minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) was quantified by both liquid dilution and disc diffusion techniques. To screen for combinatorial effects, the T. chebula fruit extracts were combined with a range of conventional antibiotics and tested against each bacteria using a liquid dilution assay. Where synergy was detected, the optimal ratios were determined using isobologram analysis. Toxicity was examined using Artemia nauplii and HDF bioassays. T. chebula fruit methanolic, aqueous and ethyl acetate extracts displayed strong antimicrobial activity against the bacterial triggers of all autoimmune inflammatory diseases except K. pneumoniae, for which only moderate inhibition was observed. Indeed, MIC values as low as 195 μg/mL were measured for the aqueous extract against a resistant strain of P. aeruginosa. Of further note, both the aqueous and ethyl acetate extracts interacted synergistically in combination with tetracycline against K. pneumoniae (Σ FIC 0.38 and 0.25 respectively). All extracts were nontoxic in the Artemia and HDF toxicity assays, further indicating their potential for medicinal use.


Synergy Multi-drug resistant bacteria Combinational therapies Rheumatoid arthritis Ankylosing spondylitis Multiple sclerosis 



Brine-shrimp lethality assay


Dimethyl sulfoxide


Human dermal fibroblasts


ρ-iodonitrotetrazolium chloride


Dose of sample necessary to have a lethal effect on 50% of test organisms or cells


Minimum inhibitory concentration


The sum of the fractional inhibitory concentration



We are most grateful to Dr Paran Rayan for supplying the plant materials used in this study. Financial support for this work was provided by the Environmental Futures Research Institute and the School of Natural Sciences, Griffith University, Australia.


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Copyright information

© Association of Microbiologists of India 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Natural Sciences, Nathan CampusGriffith UniversityNathanAustralia
  2. 2.Environmental Futures Research Institute, Nathan CampusGriffith UniversityNathanAustralia

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