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Molecules 2016, 21(8), 1069; doi:10.3390/molecules21081069

Phytochemical Profile and Evaluation of the Biological Activities of Essential Oils Derived from the Greek Aromatic Plant Species Ocimum basilicum, Mentha spicata, Pimpinella anisum and Fortunella margarita

1
Department of Molecular Biology and Genetics, Democritus University of Thrace, University Campus, Dragana, Alexandroupolis 68100, Greece
2
VIORYL S.A., Chemical & Agricultural Industry, Research S.A., Afidnes 19014, Greece
3
School of Life Sciences, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland EH14 4AS, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Isabel C. F. R. Ferreira
Received: 18 April 2016 / Revised: 2 August 2016 / Accepted: 10 August 2016 / Published: 16 August 2016
(This article belongs to the Collection Bioactive Compounds)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [445 KB, uploaded 16 August 2016]   |  

Abstract

Natural products, known for their medicinal properties since antiquity, are continuously being studied for their biological properties. In the present study, we analyzed the composition of the volatile preparations of essential oils of the Greek plants Ocimum basilicum (sweet basil), Mentha spicata (spearmint), Pimpinella anisum (anise) and Fortunella margarita (kumquat). GC/MS analyses revealed that the major components in the essential oil fractions, were carvone (85.4%) in spearmint, methyl chavicol (74.9%) in sweet basil, trans-anethole (88.1%) in anise, and limonene (93.8%) in kumquat. We further explored their biological potential by studying their antimicrobial, antioxidant and antiproliferative activities. Only the essential oils from spearmint and sweet basil demonstrated cytotoxicity against common foodborne bacteria, while all preparations were active against the fungi Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Aspergillus niger. Antioxidant evaluation by DPPH and ABTS radical scavenging activity assays revealed a variable degree of antioxidant potency. Finally, their antiproliferative potential was tested against a panel of human cancer cell lines and evaluated by using the sulforhodamine B (SRB) assay. All essential oil preparations exhibited a variable degree of antiproliferative activity, depending on the cancer model used, with the most potent one being sweet basil against an in vitro model of human colon carcinoma. View Full-Text
Keywords: Ocimum basilicum; Mentha spicata; Fortunella margarita; Pimpinella anisum; essential oil; composition; antimicrobial; antioxidant; antiproliferative Ocimum basilicum; Mentha spicata; Fortunella margarita; Pimpinella anisum; essential oil; composition; antimicrobial; antioxidant; antiproliferative
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Fitsiou, E.; Mitropoulou, G.; Spyridopoulou, K.; Tiptiri-Kourpeti, A.; Vamvakias, M.; Bardouki, H.; Panayiotidis, M.Ι.; Galanis, A.; Kourkoutas, Y.; Chlichlia, K.; Pappa, A. Phytochemical Profile and Evaluation of the Biological Activities of Essential Oils Derived from the Greek Aromatic Plant Species Ocimum basilicum, Mentha spicata, Pimpinella anisum and Fortunella margarita. Molecules 2016, 21, 1069.

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