Screening for antimicrobial and anti inflammatory activities and, formulation studies on the extracts of selected medicinal plants topically applied in Ethiopia

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Addis Ababa University


In an attempt to integrate traditionally used herbal products into modern topical formulation, extracts of the leaves of Maesa lanceolata (Myrsinaceae), Osyris quadripartita Decn. (Santalaceae), Steganotaenia araliacea Hochst ExA. Rich (Apiaceae), Cadaba farinosa (Capparidaceae) and; the aerial parts of Plantago lanceolata (Plantagonaceae) and Alachemilla pedata A. Rich (Rasaceae) have been screened for their antibacterial and antifungal activities. All hydroalcoholic extracts, except C. farinosa and S. araliacea were active against E. coli. And, all extracts had activities against S. aureus and P. aeroginosa. Similarly, screeneing of the total extracts against Candida albicans and Trichophyton mentagrophytes indicated that all extracts, except P. lanceolata on both strains and C. farinosa on T. mentagrophytes, were active. But none of the extracts tested displayed activity against Aspergillus niger. The antimicrobial activities of A. pedata and M. lanceolata were higher than those plants tested and hence, further works have been undertaken on these plants. In an attempt to localize the active ingredients, successive fractionation with petroleum ether, chloroform, acetone and methanol have been carried out. The antimicrobial activity study of the various fractions revealed that the antimicrobial effect of A. pedata was because of the non-polar components (petroleum ether fraction) and that of M. lanceolata, the activities were distributed among the various fractions. The action against T. mentagrophytes of the latter was entirely because of the polar compounds present in the methanol extract. To assess the clinical utility of these plants, MICs were determined. Accordingly, the results for A. pedata were 5 mg/ml against S. aureus and E. coli and, 10 mg/ml for C. albicans using agarwell diffusion technique. The MIC of this plant extract using agar dilution technique on the same bacteria was 0.125 mg/ml. Similarly; the MIC of M. lanceolata was 1.25 mg/ml against the abovementioned bacteria and, 0.625 mg/ml against fungi using agar-well diffusion technique. And, using dilution technique, the result was 1.25 mg/ml for bacteria and 0.0625 mg/ml for fungi. Anti-inflammatory activities and semi-quantitative standardization works were also conducted and it was found that M. lanceolata has significant anti-inflammatory activity at 100 mg/kg and 750mg/kg with better activity at 100 mg/kg. Similarly, A. pedata has also displayed antiinflammatory activity, even though the effect was less than M. lanceolata. The water extractive values were 4.66 and 5.24% (W/W) for A. pedata and M. lanceolata, respectively. Successive extractive values using petroleum ether, chloroform, acetone, methanol and water were (3.20, 4.56), (3.38, 4.36), 1.28, 0.56), (5.38, 6.52), (4.60, 6.64) for A. pedata and M. lanceolata, respectively. Ash value determination and TLC-fingerprinting were also conducted as part of the standardization work. Ointments and creams were formulated using the hadroalcoholic extracts of A. pedata and M. lanceolata. Study on the in vitro performances of the proposed formulations indicated that releases from hydrophilic bases were better and polyethylene glycol-based preparations were superior in activity than formulations prepared with hydrophobic bases. Furthermore, the in vitro performances of the formulated topical dosage forms were comparable to the activity of locally available marketed antimicrobial products.



Antimicrobial ; Anti inflammatory