Antimicrobial and Antioxidant Activities of Essential Oils of Satureja thymbra Growing Wild in Libya
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The composition of essential oil isolated from Satureja thymbra, growing wild in Libya, was analyzed by GC and GC-MS. The essential oil was characterized by gamma-terpinene (39.23%), thymol (25.16%), p-cymene (7.17%) and carvacrol (4.18%) as the major constituents. Antioxidant activity was analyzed using the 2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl (DPPH) free radical scavenging method. It possessed strong antioxidant activity (IC50 = 0.0967 mg/mL). The essential oil was also screened for its antimicrobial activity against eight bacterial and eight fungal species, showing excellent antimicrobial activity against the microorganisms used, in particular against the fungi. The oil of S. thymbra showed bacteriostatic activity at 0.001-0.1 mg/mL and was bactericidal at 0.002-0.2 mg/mL; fungistatic effects at 0.001-0.025 mg/mL and fungicidal effects at 0.001-0.1 mg/mL. The main constituents thymol, carvacrol and gamma-terpinene also showed strong antimicrobial activity. The commercial fungicide bifonazole showed much lower antifungal activity than the tested oil.