Ferula cupularis (Boiss.) Spalik et S. R. Downie (Apiaceae) is a common plant in Iran that grows in the foothills of Dena Mountain. In traditional folk medicine, this plant has different applications, but there are no studies proving their uses.
This study is the first attempt to investigate the chemical composition and antibacterial effect of the essential oils of F. cupularis.
The essential oils from flower, leaf, and stem of F. cupularis were analyzed by using GC and GC-MS. Antibacterial activity of essential oils was determined by microdilution method against Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermidis, Bacillus subtilis, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
The essential oil from flower of F. cupularis contained 15 monoterpene, 13 oxygenated monoterpene, and 2 sesquiterpene hydrocarbons. The leaf essential oil contained 12 monoterpene, 13 oxygenated monoterpene, 2 sesquiterpene, 6 oxygenated sesquiterpene hydrocarbons, and 3 non-terpenoid components. Stem essential oil contained one monoterpene, 23 oxygenated monoterpene, 2 sesquiterpene, and 6 oxygenated sesquiterpene hydrocarbons. The MIC value of stem essential oil was 2.85 mg/mL against both Gram-positive bacteria and Gram-negative bacteria except P. aeruginosa which was inhibited at 22.75 mg/mL. The MIC values of leaf and flower essential oils were higher than 5.69 and 22.75 mg/mL, respectively.
This study highlighted the strong antibacterial effect of Ferula cupularis's essential oil which might be due to its high content of oxygenated monoterpene hydrocarbons.
Our results suggested that this plant may be a good candidate for further biological and pharmacological investigations.