Composition, antimicrobial and free-radical scavenging activities of the essential oil of Plectranthus marrubatus.Nat Prod Commun. 2012 May; 7(5):667-70.NP
Essential oil from the aerial part of Plectranthus marrubatus J. K. Morton (Lamiaceae), obtained by hydrodistillation was analyzed by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) and evaluated for antimicrobial and free radical scavenging activities. Twenty-four compounds representing 99% of the total oil were identified. The major constituents were thymol, p-cymene and gamma-terpinene. The oil was tested against 21 bacterial and 4 fungal strains using the disc diffusion method and found to be active against a broad spectrum of pathogens including Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria as well as some fungal strains. The minimum inhibitory concentrations (MICs) of the oil against the bacterial strains tested ranged from 10 to 800 microg/mL, and from 400 to 800 microg/mL against the fungal strains employed. The in vitro antioxidant activity was assessed using 2,2-diphenyl-l-picrylhydrazil (DPPH) and showed a low EC50 value of 0.15 microl/mL. The study provides evidence for the broad-spectrum antimicrobial and antioxidant effect of Plectranthus marrubatus essential oil, and a possible explanation for its traditional use in the treatment of cold, fever, stomach disorder, diarrhea and as a skin cleaner.