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J Agric Food Chem. 2002 May 22;50(11):3208-13.

Antimycotic activities of selected plant flora, growing wild in Lebanon, against phytopathogenic fungi.

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Department of Plant Sciences, Faculty of Agricultural and Food Sciences, American University of Beirut, P.O. Box 11-0236, Riad El Solh, Beirut 1107 2020, Lebanon.


Petroleum ether (PE) and methanolic extracts of nine wild plant species were tested in vitro for their antimycotic activity against eight phytopathogenic fungi. The efficacy of PE extracts against all pathogens tested was higher than that of methanolic extracts. Wild marjoram (Origanum syriacum) PE extract showed the highest and widest range of activity. It resulted in complete inhibition of mycelial growth of six of eight fungi tested and also gave nearly complete inhibition of spore germination of the six fungi included in the assay, namely, Botrytis cinerea, Alternaria solani, Penicillium sp., Cladosporium sp., Fusarium oxysporum f. sp. melonis, and Verticillium dahlia. The other plant extracts showed differential activities in the spore germination test, but none was highly active against mycelial growth. Inula viscosa and Mentha longifolia were highly effective (>88%) in spore germination tests against five of six fungi tested, whereas Centaurea pallescens, Cichorium intybus, Eryngium creticum, Salvia fruticosa, and Melia azedarach showed >95% inhibition of spore germination in at least two fungi. Foeniculum vulgare showed the least antimycotic activity. Fractionation followed by autobiography on TLC plates using Cladosporium sp. as a test organism showed that O. syriacum PE extracts contained three inhibition zones, and those of Inula viscosa and Cichorium intybus, two, whereas the PE extracts of the remaining plants showed each one inhibition zone. Some of the major compounds present in these inhibition zones were identified by GC-MS. The possibility for using these extracts, or their mixtures, to control plant diseases is discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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