Evaluation of antifungal activities of the essential oil and various extracts of Nigella sativa and its main component, thymoquinone against pathogenic dermatophyte strains.J Mycol Med. 2014 Dec; 24(4):e155-61.JM
Plant extracts and plant-derived compounds are valuable sources as folk medicine for the treatment and prevention of a wide range of diseases including infectious diseases. In the present study, the antifungal activities of the essential oil and various extracts Nigella sativa and its active principle, thymoquinone against Trichophyton mentagrophytes, Microsporum canis and Microsporum gypseum as pathogenic dermatophyte strains have been evaluated. In addition, the cytotoxic effects of N. sativa against murine macrophage cells were determined.
MATERIALS AND METHODS
In this study, the antifungal activity was studied by disk diffusion method and assessment of minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC) of extracts using broth macrodilution method. In addition, the cytotoxic activity of N. sativa was evaluated by colorimetric assay (MTT). The components of the N. sativa essential oil were also identified by gas chromatography/mass spectroscopy (GC/MS) analysis.
The results showed that the essential oil and various extracts of N. sativa particularly thymoquinone have potent antifungal effects on T. mentagrophytes, M. canis and M. gypseum as pathogenic dermatophyte strains. In the assessment of the cytotoxicity activity, it could be observed that N. sativa had no significant cytotoxicity in the murine macrophages at low concentrations. While, thymoquinone in comparison with essential oil and various extracts of N. sativa showed higher cytotoxicity on murine macrophage cells. In the GC/MS analysis, thymoquinone (42.4%), p-cymene (14.1%), carvacrol (10.3%) and longifolene (6.1%) were found to be the major components of N. sativa essential oil.
The findings of this study suggest a first step in the search of new antidermatophytic drugs and aid the use of N. sativa seeds in the traditional medicine for dermatophytic infections.