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Broad-spectrum antibacterial and antifungal properties of certain traditionally used Indian medicinal plants


Ethanolic extracts of 22 traditionally used Indian medicinal plants were studied for their antimicrobial activity against seven bacteria (Staphylococcus aureus, Salmonella typhimurium, S. paratyphi, S. typhi, E. coli, Shigella dysenteriae and Pseudomonas aeruginosa) and five filamentous fungi (Aspergillus niger, Alternaria alternata, Fusarium chlamydosporum, Rhizoctonia bataticola and Trichoderma viride) and a yeast Candida albicans of clinical origin. Of these, 16 plant extracts showed varied level of antibacterial activity against one or more test bacteria. Similarly antifungal and anticandidal activity was detected among 17 and 9 plant extracts respectively. Broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity (both antibacterial and antifungal) was detected among crude extracts of Bryophyllum pinnatum (leaves), Caesalpinia bonducella (seeds), Delonix regia (flower), Hedychium spicatum (fruits), Mangifera indica (leaves), Murraya coenigii (leaves) and Syzgium cumini (seeds). Similarly extracts of Cichorium intybus (roots), Ficus religiosa (leaves) and Trigonella foenum-graecum (leaves) demonstrated more antibacterial activity with less antifungal activity. On the other hand Pistacia integerrima (stems) and Rheum emodi (roots) demonstrated more antifungal activity with less antibacterial activity.

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Aqil, F., Ahmad, I. Broad-spectrum antibacterial and antifungal properties of certain traditionally used Indian medicinal plants. World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology 19, 653–657 (2003).

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  • Antibacterial
  • antifungal activities
  • Indian medicinal plants
  • pathogenic microbes