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Nat Prod Commun. 2012 Jan;7(1):109-12.

Composition, antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of the leaf essential oil of Machilus japonica from Taiwan.

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  • 1Department of Forestry, National Chung Hsing University, 250 Kuo Kuang Rd., Taichung, Taiwan 402.


The chemical composition, and antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of the essential oil isolated from the leaf of Machilus japonica from Taiwan have been investigated. The essential oil from the fresh leaves was isolated using hydrodistillation in a Clevenger-type apparatus, and characterized by GC-FID and GC-MS. A total of 97 compounds were identified, representing 100% of the oil. The main components identified were alpha-phellandrene (14.5%), alpha-pinene (12.8%), thymol (12.6%), beta-pinene (8.3%), alpha-terpineol (6.5%) and carvacrol (6.0%). The antioxidant activity of the oil was tested by the DPPH (2,2-diphenyl-1-picrylhydrazyl) free radical scavenging capability test. The results showed that the IC50 was 51.8 microg/mL. The antimicrobial activity of the oil was tested by the disc diffusion and micro-broth dilution methods against ten microbial species. The oil exhibited strong growth suppression against Gram-positive bacteria and yeast, with inhibition zones of 48-54 mm and MIC values of 16.12-32.25 microg/mL, respectively. For the antioxidant and antimicrobial activities of the oil, the active source compounds were determined to be thymol and carvacrol.

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