Invasive Species Compendium

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Abstract

Screening of some plants used in the Brazilian folk medicine for the treatment of infectious diseases.

Abstract

Extracts of 13 Brazilian medicinal plants were screened for their antimicrobial activity against bacteria and yeasts. Of these, 10 plant extracts showed varied levels of antibacterial activity. Piper regnellii presented a good activity against Staphylococcus aureus and Bacillus subtilis, a moderate activity on Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and a weak activity against Escherichia coli. Punica granatum showed good activity on S. aureus and was inactive against the other standard strains. Eugenia uniflora presented moderate activity on both S. aureus and Escherichia coli. Psidium guajava, Tanacetum vulgare, Arctium lappa, Mikania glomerata, Sambucus canadensis, Plantago major and Erythrina speciosa presented some degree of antibacterial activity. Spilanthes acmella, Lippia alba, and Achillea millefolium were considered inactive. Five of the plant extracts presented compounds with Rf values similar to the antibacterial compounds visible on bioautogram. Of these, three plants belong to the Asteraceae family. This may mean that the same compounds are responsible for the antibacterial activity in these plants. Anticandidal activity was detected in nine plant extracts (Psidium guajava, Eugenia uniflora, Punica granatum, Arctium lappa, Tanacetum vulgare, Mikania glomerata, Lippia alba, Piper regnellii, and Plantago major). The results might explain the ethnobotanical use of the studied species for the treatment of various infectious diseases.