Antimicrobial activity of some Australian plant species from the genus Eremophila.J Basic Microbiol. 2007 Apr; 47(2):158-64.JB
Plant species of the genus Eremophila (Myoporaceae) are native to Australia and are known to produce a diverse range of unusual secondary compounds. The purpose of this research was to examine the antimicrobial activity of 72 Eremophila species most of which had not been the subject of any previous pharmacological testing. Organic extracts of Eremophila species were screened for antimicrobial activity against Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria and yeasts of medical importance. Extracts of a number of Eremophila species showed selective activity against Gram-positive bacteria with MICs for the most active species in the range of 16 to 62 microg/ml for Streptococcus species, and 62 to 250 microg/ml for standard strains of Staphylococcus aureus. Extracts with the greatest activity against standard strains were tested against 68 clinical isolates of multi-resistant methicillin-resistant S. aureus (mMRSA). The majority of the clinical isolates were susceptible to concentrations below 62.5 microg/ml for the extracts of E. drummondii, E. linearis, E. serrulata, E. acrida, E. neglecta, E. virens and a new undescribed species affiliated with E. prolata. The extract of E. virens inhibited growth of all 68 clinical mMRSA isolates at the minimum tested concentration of 31 microg/ml. This study has shown for the first time that a number of different Eremophila species manifest selective antibacterial activity against Gram-positive organisms which are important causes of human disease. It shows that there are several Eremophila species possessing interesting antibacterial activity besides those that have published traditional use. These may yield novel antibacterial compounds with potential to be used in biomedical applications.