Ethanolic extracts from resin, root bark, stem bark and leaves of Commiphora swynnertoniiwere tested against fungi and bacteria using agar well diffusion method. The fungi includedCandida albicans and Aspergillus niger whereas the bacteria species includedStaphylococcus aureus, Streptococcus pyogenes, Bacillus subtilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhimurium and Escherichia coli. Antimicrobial activity was determined by measuring inhibition zone diameters around agar wells. Resin and root bark extracts showed significant activities against S. pyogenes, E. coli and B. subtilis compared to the other two extracts. Growth of E. coli was highly reduced by resin extract (minimum inhibition concentration = 1.9 µg/ml). The fungi, C. albicans, also showed similar sensitivity to resin and root bark extract. Growth of S. typhimurium was not reduced by all four extracts at all concentrations tested whereas that of P. aeruginosa was slightly reduced. Cytotoxicity studies using brine lethality test indicated that root bark, stem bark and resin extract had effect to brine shrimps with LC50 of 3.5, 13.0 and 15.8 µg/ml, respectively. The current results indicate that resin and root bark extracts of C. swynnertonii have strong antimicrobial activity against most of the tested microbes and support the traditional use of the plant in treating various infectious diseases. Further studies are suggested to validate the use of this plant against the diseases caused by the tested microbes.
Key words: Commiphora swynnertonii, antibacterial activity, antifungal, cytotoxicity test, crude plant extracts.
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