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J Sci Food Agric. 2017 Feb;97(3):802-810. doi: 10.1002/jsfa.7799. Epub 2016 Jun 9.

Antimicrobial activity of pomegranate peel extracts as affected by cultivar.

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Grupo Calidad y Seguridad Alimentaria, Departamento de Tecnología Agroalimentaria, Escuela Politécnica Superior de Orihuela (EPSO), Universidad Miguel Hernández de Elche (UMH), Ctra. Beniel, km 3.2, E-03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain.
Departamento de Investigación y Posgrado en Alimentos, Universidad de Sonora, Blvd Luis Encinas y Rosales s/n, Col. Centro, CP 83000, Hermosillo, Sonora, México.
Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Biotechnology and Food Science, Tr. A. Hlinku 2, Slovak University of Agriculture in Nitra, 949 76, Nitra, Slovak Republic.
Grupo de Fruticultura y Técnicas de Producción, Departamento de Producción Vegetal y Microbiología, EPSO, UMH, Ctra. Beniel, km 3.2, E-03312, Orihuela, Alicante, Spain.



Some studies have reported that different parts of the pomegranate fruit, especially the peel, may act as potential antimicrobial agents and thus might be proposed as a safe natural alternative to synthetic antimicrobial agents. The high tannin content, especially punicalagin, found in pomegranate extracts, has been reported as the main compound responsible for such antimicrobial activity. Because the pomegranate peel chemical composition may vary with the type of cultivar (sweet, sour-sweet and sour), pomegranates may also differ with respect to their antimicrobial capacity.


The extract from PTO8 pomegranate cultivar peel had the highest antimicrobial activity, as well as the highest punicalagins (α and β) and ellagic acid concentrations. In the results obtained from both antibacterial and antifungal activity studies, the sour-sweet pomegranate cultivar PTO8 showed the best antimicrobial activity, and the highest ellagic acid concentrations.


The results of the present study suggest that ellagic acid content has a significant influence on the antimicrobial activity of the pomegranate extracts investigated. The pomegranate peel of the PTO8 cultivar is a good source of antifungal and antibacterial compounds, and may represent an alternative to antimicrobial agents of synthetic origin. © 2016 Society of Chemical Industry.


antibacterial activity; antifungal activity; minimum inhibitory concentration; radial growth inhibition; sour-sweet pomegranate cultivars

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