Antimicrobial activity in vitro of plumbagin isolated from Plumbago species

Mem Inst Oswaldo Cruz. 2003 Oct;98(7):959-61. doi: 10.1590/s0074-02762003000700017. Epub 2004 Jan 7.


Plumbagin is a naturally occurring naphthoquinone isolated from roots of Plumbago scandens. The plant was collected at the Campus of Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. P. scandens is used as a traditional medicine for the treatment of several diseases. The antimicrobial activity of plumbagin was evaluated using the macrodilution method. The compound exhibited relatively specific activity against bacteria and yeast. The minimum inhibitory concentration test showed the growth inhibiton of Staphylococcus aureus at a concentration of 1.56 g/ml and of Candida albicans at a concentration of 0.78 g/ml. These results suggest the naphthoquinone plumbagin as a promising antimicrobial agent.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Infective Agents / isolation & purification
  • Anti-Infective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Candida albicans / drug effects*
  • Escherichia coli / drug effects*
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Naphthoquinones / isolation & purification
  • Naphthoquinones / pharmacology*
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology
  • Plumbaginaceae
  • Salmonella typhimurium / drug effects*
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects*


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Naphthoquinones
  • Plant Extracts
  • plumbagin