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Activity of Essential Oils from Mediterranean Lamiaceae Species against Food Spoilage Yeasts

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The essential oils from aerial parts of Melissa officinalis, Lavandula angustifolia, Salvia officinalis, and Mentha piperita were analyzed by gas chromatography and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Their antimicrobial activities were evaluated against five food spoilage yeasts, Torulaspora delbrueckii, Zygosaccharomyces bailii, Pichia membranifaciens, Dekkera anomala, and Yarrowia lipolytica. Saccharomyces cerevisiae was also used as a reference. The oils were preliminarily screened by a disc diffusion technique, with the most active being the oil from M. officinalis. MICs were determined by the broth dilution method, and the main components of the oils were also tested by this method. The essential oil of M. officinalis at 500 μg/ml completely inhibited the growth of all yeast species. The main component of the oil of M. officinalis is citral (neral plus geranial) (58.3%), which showed a marked fungitoxic effect, contributing to its high activity.


Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Biology, University of Minho, 4710-057 Braga, Portugal

Publication date: April 1, 2003

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