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EXPLORATION OF ANTIMICROBIAL POTENTIAL OF METHANOL EXTRACT OF STEMS OF EUPHORBIA NERIIFOLIA

ABSTRACT The antimicrobial efficacy of methanol extract of stem of the plant Euphorbia neriifolia (Family: Euphorbiaceae) was evaluated against selected pathogenic bacterial strains (Staphylococcus aureus ATC-2245, Streptococcus aerugenosa U59, Escherichia Coli K88, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Salmonella typhi 12, Proeus vulgaris CC-52, Aspergillus niger 36 and Candida albicans. The antimicrobial activity was evaluated by disc diffusion and micro dilution assay methods. Streptomycin and ampicilin were used as standard antibacterial drugs whilst amphotericin B was used as standard antifungal drug. Results of both assays ensured that the stem possess significant antimicrobial activity in terms of antibacterial and antifungal activity. Results are comparable to that of standard drugs selected. It is also evident from results that methanol extract showed better activity against pathogenic bacteria than fungi. INTRODUCTION Herbal medicines have been used since the dawn of civilization to maintain health and to treat disease. There is a tremendous historical legacy in folklore uses of plant preparations in medicines. Scientific studies on plants used in ethnomedicine led to the discovery of many valuable drugs 1 . Antimicrobial properties of medicinal plants are being increasingly reported from different parts of the world 2,3 . The World Health Organization estimated that about 80 % of the world's population still believes in herbal drugs for their primary health care 4 . There are indiscriminate uses of synthetic antimicrobial drugs for the treatment of infectious diseases and as a result drug resistance developed in human beings as well as in plant also 5,6 . Sometimes antibiotics cause adverse reaction like hypersensitivity, immunosuppression and allergic reactions. Therefore, there is a need to develop alternative antimicrobial drugs for the treatment of infectious diseases from various sources, including medicinal plants 7,8 . Euphorbia neriifolia Linn. (Euphorbiaceae) commonly known as "Sehund or thohar" in Hindi, is found throughout the Deccan Peninsula of India and grows luxuriously around the dry, hilly, rocky areas of North, Central and South India. Ayurveda describes the plant as bitter, pungent, laxative, carminative, improves appetite useful in abdominal troubles, bronchitis, tumors, loss of consciousness, delirium, leucoderma, piles, inflammation, enlargement of spleen, anaemia, ulcers and fever 9,10 . As far as our literature survey could ascertain, no information was available on the antimicrobial activities of the stem of E. neriifolia. Therefore, the aim of this current investigation was to explore the antimicrobial potential of methanol extract of stem of E. neriifolia against some pathogenic organism.

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May 16, 2014