Journal of
Medicinal Plants Research

  • Abbreviation: J. Med. Plants Res.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0875
  • DOI: 10.5897/JMPR
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 3707

Full Length Research Paper

Antifungal activity of medicinal plants from Northeastern Brazil

Magda Rhayanny Assunção Ferreira1, Rosilene Rodrigues Santiago1, Silvana Maria Zucolotto Langassner1, João Carlos Palazzo de Mello2, Terezinha Inez Estivalet Svidzinski3 and Luiz Alberto Lira Soares1,4*
1Programa de Pós graduação em Ciências Farmacêuticas, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. 2Departamento de Farmácia e Farmacologia – Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Brazil. 3Departamento de Análises Clínicas – Universidade Estadual de Maringá, Brazil. 4Departamento de Ciências Farmacêuticas – Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Brazil.
Email: [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 08 October 2013
  •  Published: 25 October 2013


The aim of this work was to find how medicinal plants play an important role as source of new bioactive molecules. To evaluate the antifungal activity of 10 medicinal plants from northeastern Brazil, traditionally used as anti-infective agents. The activity of 30 crude extracts (water; ethanol:water, 1:1; acetone:water, 1:1) against four standard species of Candida yeasts (Candida albicans ATCC 90028, Candida dubliniensis ATCC 7289, Candida glabrata ATCC 2001 and Candida krusei ATCC 6258) was investigated by the Minimal Inhibitory Concentration (MIC), using the microdilution method and the working range used was from 1.95 to 1000 μg/mL. Extracts from leaves of Eugenia uniflora (Myrtaceae), stem bark of Caesalpinia ferrea (Caesalpinaceae) and leaves of Psidium guajava (Myrtaceae) showed significant activity against all yeasts evaluated. The best antifungal activities were achieved against C. glabrata and C. krusei by E. uniflora extract (MIC = 15.62) and followed by extracts from C. ferrea and P. guajava (MIC ranged from 15.62 to 250 µg/mL). E. uniflora also showed fungicidal properties against all yeasts, especially against Candida dubliniensis. This study identified plant species that may be candidates for the development of alternative treatments for candidiasis.

Key words: Antifungal activity, candidiasis, medicinal plants, crude extracts, fungicide, northeastern Brazil.