Antimicrobial activity and cytotoxicity of commercial rosemary essential oil (Rosmarinus officinalis L.)

Zorica Stojanović-Radić, Marija Nešić, Ljiljana Čomić, Niko Radulović


Stojanović-Radić, Z., Nešić, M., Čomić, Lj., Radulović, N.: Antimicrobial activity and cytotoxicity ofcommercial rosemary oil (Rosmarinus officinalis L.). Biologica Nyssana, 1 (1-2), December 2010: 83-88.

Rosemary is well known as a spice and widely used plant in ethnomedicine worldwide. In this paper,commercial essential oil of rosemary was tested for antimicrobial and cytotoxic activity together with itseffect on germination. Antimicrobial activity testing showed moderate effect to both G-positive and Gnegativebacteria. In order to determine its effect to the cell membrane, spectrophotometric analysis wasperformed. It was determined that rosemary affects the cell membrane of bacteria. Cytotoxic activity ofRosmarinus officinalis essential oil had been evaluated. As a plant object, germinative bulbs of Allium cepawere used. Cytotoxic activity that corresponded to the concentration of essential oil was determined. It hadbeen noticed that rosemary essential oil affected mitotic phase i.e. it significantly slowed down the mitosis.Also, investigation of rosemary essential oil's activity to germination was performed. It was determined thatit had high effect to the germination. Concentration of 5 mg/ml completely inhibited the germination ofTriticum vulgare.

Key words: essential oil, cytotoxicity, antimicrobial activity, effect on germination

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