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Objective: Herbs have been recognized as therapeutic medicines that provide natural and safer remedies to dozens of common ailments for several centuries. This project evaluated the antimicrobial activity of Thai traditional herbal plants against three common oral bacteria. Methods: Forty-three methanol herbal extracts from thirty-three plants were selected for screening test. Herbal plants which exhibited antimicrobial properties were tested further via disc diffusion and broth microdilution assays. The bioactive compound was extracted from the herb that presented the highest antimicrobial properties and its antimicrobial effect was also tested by disc diffusion.
Results: Three herbal extracts from Dracaena loureiri Gagnep., Artocarpus lakoocha Roxb. (heartwood) and Albizia myriophylla Benth. revealed antimicrobial properties against Streptococcus mutans, Lactobacilllus casei, and Actinomyces viscosus with minimum bactericidal concentration (MBC) ranging from 0.58-9.37 mg/ml. Albizia myriophylla Benth. presented better bactericidal effect against three strains compared to other plants. However, A. lakoocha Roxb. (heartwood) presented the highest inhibition zone (24 mm), which was similar to chlorhexidine (24-28 mm) and Oxyresveratrol (its pure compound) was found to have the highest effect against S. mutans and presented the largest inhibition zone (20 mm) at the concentration of 30 mg/ml.
Conclusion: Out of forty-three herbal extracts, only Albizia myriophylla Benth. and A. lakoocha Roxb. had superior antimicrobial properties compared to other plants. Oxyresveratrol, which was A. lakoocha Roxb. ’s pure compound did not present better effect than crude extract.
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