Efficacies of the two variants of Morus alba locally grown in Forestry Research Institute of Nigeria, were investigated following the recommended procedure of analysis. Phytochemical, proximate and mineral compositions of M. alba leaves were determined using a standard procedure. Antimicrobial properties of leaf extracts of M. alba were also investigated against laboratory standards of both bacteria and fungi using the disc diffusion method. Phytochemical screening showed the presence of saponins, alkaloids, tannins, oxalate and flavonoids. Trypsin inhibitors, phytate and phenolic compounds were also present in appreciable quantity. Proximate analysis revealed the presence of crude protein, crude fat and crude fibre which is an indication of the plant’s nutritional value and could find an application in feed suppliments. The moisture content of M. alba (S30- 4.350% and S54- 1.050%) is indicative of its non-perishability, therefore could be stored for a long period of time. Minerals are needed for some physiological functions and some of the minerals are supplied from external sources. M. alba (S30 and S54) showed the presence of potassium, calcium, phosporus, zinc and magnesium. The minerals investigated revealed that the plant has low mineral content with the exception of potassium (S30- 32.650 mg/100 mg and S54- 31.400 mg/100 mg) which was high. The antibacterial activity was evaluated against microbes by detecting zones of inhibition and minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC). The zones of inhibition were compared with standard antibiotic discs of bacitracin for bacteria and streptomycin for fungi. The MIC values of the cold water extracts of the plant were low when compared with both hot water extracts and ethanol (99.7%) extracts. This is an indication of high potency and most suitable to combat nocosomial infection. M. albaextracts could find applications in the treatment of infections as indicated by the result of the antimicrobial screening and the whole plants can also be used in feed compounding for domestic animals.
Key words: Morus alba, antimicrobial, phytoconstituents, medicine, organisms.
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